April 30, 2013 by Will Ray
Have you ever experienced the joy of giving?
We all know the old “Tis better to give than to receive,” but many of us say it in a a sarcastic, halfhearted way. It’s only when we actually experience the joy of giving for ourselves that we really come to understand the truth of that statement.
Nancy and I wrapped up our fourth FPU class with the last lesson about giving last night – “The Great Misunderstanding.”
In this lesson Dave addresses the importance of giving in a healthy financial plan.
The “Great Misunderstanding,” he says, is that we mistakenly believe that the way to have money is to hold onto what we have tightly. But the fact of the matter is that we’ll never really attain “Financial Peace” until we learn to hold our money with an open hand.
With an open hand, money flows out and money flows in. With a closed hand, that doesn’t happen!
I think a vitally important part to understand in relation to giving is ownership. Who owns it? Who owns your money? Legally, you do (aside from your taxes). Morally and ultimately, God does, because he owns it all.
God’s Word is very clear about where everything comes from, and who really owns “your” stuff. If you give a plain reading to the Bible, you see the truth that everything we have comes from God, and in the end, it’s really His. (See James 1:17 and Psalm 24:1 for a couple quick references.)
Once you understand this truth that your money isn’t really your money, it becomes easier to give away. We’re not owners of the money entrusted to us, we’re managers of it! If the owner of the money says, “Give me this much money,” or “Give some money to this person,” it becomes so much easier to give it with that mindset.
A couple of notes about giving:
– We should never give with the purpose of getting, but the Bible is pretty clear that it will generally happen if we do give. Check out Malachi 3:7-10, II Corinthians 9:6-7, and Proverbs 11:24-25 for a start.
– Start giving NOW
Giving is not a Baby Step. It should be happening no matter how you’re doing financially. Don’t wait to get your act together before you start giving. Be faithful with what you have now, and you will be faithful with what you have later when you have more (see Luke 16:10-12).
Nancy and I realized that we were called to be big givers a long time ago. But that didn’t start when we paid off our house. That started back then, as we gave more and more, working out those giving muscles.
Man, I get so excited thinking about what we could really do if all of us really understood this giving thing. I pray you all get to experience the joy of giving, and allow God to change who you are with your giving.
Imagine the incredible things we could do if we got our act together financially, if we learned to get out of debt, save, spend wisely, invest, and really give. Why wait? Start today.
Question: When you get your act together and are “living like no one else,” what cause do you want to support in a big way? What’s a fun way that you’d like to bless people when you have the money to do it?