Regardless of your “religious” background, I would venture to say most of us know we should give. We might not want to give, but we know it’s a “good thing” to do. We try to say “yes” occasionally, when the cashier asks us to donate to the cancer society. We try to scrounge for a few coins when kids come knocking on our front door to support a local charity. But how often do we seek out ways to give? Perhaps not often. Two possible reasons: 1) We feel like we don’t have enough–or won’t have enough. 2) We simply don’t think about it!
Biblically, I believe Reason #1 is an impossibility. Nobody has ever became poor by giving. I can testify to this in my life. As a Christian, it’s my conviction to tithe 10% of my income to my church. Above and beyond that, I believe in offerings. Some of the organizations I have given to include World Vision, Mercy Ministries, Village of Hope, Watoto. I share, not to boast, but to encourage, I have always had enough. Miracles take place in our heart when we have a “give first” principle. Where you invest your money, you invest your life. (Let’s be honest – the majority of our time is spent working AKA making money. Therefore, investing money equals investing a large part of your life.) I’ve been challenged with this thought lately: It’s not how much I give but how much I have left.
A stingy planter gets a stingy crop; a lavish planter gets a lavish crop. I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give… God can pour on the blessings in astonishing ways so that you’re ready for anything and everything, more than just ready to do what needs to be done… This most generous God who gives seed to the farmer that becomes bread for your meals is more than extravagant with you. He gives you something you can then give away, which grows into full-formed lives, robust in God, wealthy in every way, so that you can be generous in every way, producing with us great praise to God. [2 Corinthians 9 - The Message translation]
The second reason we fail to give is: life moves fast. We forget! It slips our minds! My friend Sarah is part of an incredible team with a solution for you. (Sarah & I first met when she was managing Laurell’s music career. We’ve stayed in touch and have since worked together on a shoot for her Vancouver, We Love You project.) This solution is called The One Year One Percent campaign.
The One Year One Percent campaign was established to encourage Canadians nation-wide to make a commitment to GIVE. The challenge is simple: give one percent of your income to charity in 2013. This initiative seeks to reverse the trend of only “giving when asked,” — instead, makes giving intentional. They’ve partnered with Charitable Impact Foundation (Chimp) to organize incoming donations and introduce participants to deserving local/national charities. (You don’t have to use Chimp, of course, but it is a helpful tool.)
I want to encourage you – if you’ve never made a solid commitment to give a specific amount, regularly, without being asked, this can be your year. I believe firmly, truly, without-a-shadow-of-a-doubt, you will be blessed abundantly for it – financially, but also with a joyful heart.
P.S. When I started writing this post last week, I had no idea our Senior Pastor (Brent Cantelon) would ask me to share on Sunday morning about my journey in generosity. I had a lot of fun sharing for a few minutes both morning services. (Side note: Woah. Biggest group I’ve spoken to – 1000 each service. Hi people.) I like church. Video below. (Listen to the whole thing! However, I’m at the 25:00 mark.)