Thursday, August 6, 2009


I have a confession to make. I’m not a natural giver. It’s not something that comes easy for me and I hate that. I have a sense of abundance, but often feel the need to not give enough. When I was in college I gave away 10% of everything I made like clockwork. That was before real bills and responsibilities kicked in. At the end of the day I knew my parents would always help me. Once I set out on my own the money was mine. I needed to invest it and save. I wanted to spend the rest on things I found fun and exciting.

And yet deep down part of me wanted to give back.
Biblically, I am encouraged to:

10 Here is my advice: It would be good for you to finish what you started a year ago. Last year you were the first who wanted to give, and you were the first to begin doing it. 11 Now you should finish what you started. Let the eagerness you showed in the beginning be matched now by your giving. Give in proportion to what you have. 12 Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have.
-2 Corinthians 8:10-12

I’m so blessed, I know I have more then I need, but part of me wants to take care of myself now. Giving is something all of us could probably do more of. I read a great post by Tim Ferris and he outlined some points for why giving now is a better idea than waiting and giving more when you are rich.

Here is a list of his main points:

1) Giving Back Now is Like Investing With Compound Interest
2) Prevention Cost Much Less than Cure and Is Ultimately More Powerful
3) Giving Makes You Feel Good
4) Changing the World is Cheap

These are all really good points. When I read it my eyes were opened to the benefits of taking action today. I started tithing again regularly a couple of weeks ago. Honestly, I thought it would be a big deal and seem like a lot of money, but really I haven’t missed the money at all. I feel fulfilled as if I’m doing my part to contribute to something I believe in. I feel even more abundance and thankfulness for what I have. We all have ideas and ideals, but a lot of times we never cross over into action. We read the feel good stories, but we don’t contribute to the cause.

Money isn't the only thing we can contribute; volunteerism is sometimes more valuable than any dollar amount. My grandfather does a lot for Habitat for Humanity (68 houses!) and helps build cabinets for various groups. When I help him not only do I learn something, but I’m blessed by the stories of the people I have helped. Last summer I spent my two weeks of vacation building cabinets for a preacher in Freestone just north of Huntsville. It was one of the best vacations I have ever had.

I don’t know if it’s me or our generation, but perhaps our mindsets aren’t in giving back. Heck we’ve all got our own problems. As I listen to older generations they seemed to help eachother out a lot more. Maybe it’s the technology of our world that takes our hand off the pulse of society. We can keep everything at arm’s length. Instead of relationships we have facebook friends and news articles. I don’t know what it is, but personally I’ve realized having been given so much I of all people need to give back.

Find out how much God has given you and from it take what you need; the remainder is needed by others.
-St. Augustine

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