I was eager to read Living with Less so Your Family Has More by Jill Savage and Mark Savage because I knew I could use some inspiration in an area of simplicity and frugality that God has been nudging me to consider. Jill and her husband, Mark, did not disappoint. And in case you would shy away from this book expecting some sort of brow-beating by them to make you feel guilty in order to make changes, you can be assured that their book is gentle, humorous realistic, inviting, and very, very practical. It’s not only a “let me tell you what God has been doing in our lives,” but “here are ideas that you can consider.”

Although written primarily for families with at-home children, I believe any of us would benefit from this book. I did. Regardless of whether we want to simplify our attitudes because we have to, or because we want to because it could honor God, Living with Less so Your Family Has More provides the vision, biblical attitudes and practical actions, as you can see from the Table of Contents (below). Just by looking it over, you know that every area of a family and marriage has been included.

Jill and Mark are honest about their shortcomings and vulnerable in sharing their struggles. Their attitudes of humility and honesty make the book even more attractive. It’s definitely not a book of “we’ve conquered this and so should you.” And every chapter ends with a “Let’s Talk About It” section so that husbands and wives can more easily consider what they’ve read.

The Savages are the parents of five children so you know they have a lot to share. Jill is the founder and CEO of Hearts at Home (www.hearts-at-home.org), an organization that encourages, educates, and equips mothers. Mark had served as a pastor for more than twenty years and just recently resigned his church position to work full-time for Hearts at Home. Both Jill and Mark speak at conferences throughout the world to bring hope to parents.

I highly recommend this book, especially if you have children still at home.

Table of Contents:

Part 1 Vision

Chapter 1 Less Is Really More

Chapter 2 Redefining More

Part 2 Attitudes

Chapter 3 Countercultural Mindset: It’s an Out-of-This-World Experience

Chapter 4 Contentment: Living with Less and Liking It

Chapter 5 Sacrifice: Forfeit to Win!

Chapter 6 Simplicity: Sometimes Less Really Is More

Chapter 7 Frugality: Living with More Time and Less Money

Chapter 8 Faith: Ordinary People Trusting in an Extraordinary God

Chapter 9 Community: You Can’t Do This Alone

Part 3 Actions

Chapter 10 Finances: Budget Is Not a Bad Word and Cash Really Is in Vogue

Chapter 11 Savings, Investments and Insurance: It’s All about the Risk

Chapter 12 Food and Clothing: Have Your Cake and Eat It Too

Chapter 13 Housing: There’s No Place Like Home

Chapter 14 Transportation: You’re driving Me Crazy

Chapter 15 Holidays: Santa’s on a Budget and Vacation is a Nonnegotiable

Chapter 16 College: Higher Education at Lower Cost

Chapter 17 Income: Make Money Doing What You Love

Chapter 18 Are You a Less-Is-More Family?