10,000 steps seems a huge amount
At the outset, I was a little daunted. After all, 10,000 seems a huge number of steps. But you know, if you're like me, running around for children's ministry, organising teams and programs, locating resources, setting of ministry areas, meeting with volunteers, searching for missing equipment, picking up materials for displays and promotions and, do I need to go on.... I pass that daily target of 10,000 easily!
And, it's no different when it comes to your car. You're probably thinking, "I don't use it much. There's no need to track the mileage. I can't be bothered."
It all adds up
Yep... I understand. But honestly, just like my daily steps, it adds up. Check it out for a week and see. You'll probably be surprised. . Let's face it, when you use your vehicle for business/ ministry, those miles can add up to a sizable deduction on your tax return.
OK, maybe you're not paid for your ministry work. It's still good stewardship of your personal finances to keep track of this mileage. Remember, it's costing you money in petrol as well as wear and tear on your vehicle. You might find it's worth mentioning to your church leadership team. After all, I'm sure they appreciate your ministry passion and involvement. This may be a simple way to encourage and support your ministry. They might suggest providing you with a fuel card or perhaps another way of assisting you with these ongoing costs.
Here are just a few ways that you use your vehicle for ministry without even thinking about it....
- driving to the stores to pick up resources and supplies for your ministry programs and events.
- driving to planning/ leadership meetings
- attending ministry conferences or networking events
- visiting families
- driving to the post office to mail 'Get Well' cards for kids, letters to visiting families or family newsletters
- driving to the office supply/printer for copies of event flyers or banners
The best way is to keep a log of those times that you use your personal vehicle for business/ministry needs. You'll need to include the date, odometer readings of each trip, the purpose of the trip, the destination and any other expenses incurred such as parking fees, tolls etc.
FREE mileage tracker form
Some people prefer to use a printed mileage tracker and note this important information each time the car is used for ministry. If you're comfortable with this method, you might like to download and print the FREE Mileage Tracker below. Print a number of copies, attach them to a clipboard and place it in your car along with a pen so that you can easily note these details whenever necessary.
But, there are also some helpful apps that will make reporting your mileage easy. Many of them will record the information about each trip automatically, so these are well-worth investigating. Here are just a few options. Hover over each for more information and click the image for the link: