Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Where Does Giving Fit In?

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Where Does Giving Fit In?

Article excerpt

IN TOUGH economic times - such as the United States is currently experiencing with high gas and food prices, climbing unemployment rates, and a saturated housing market darkened by foreclosures - one might well ask, "Where does giving fit in?" Is there a place for personal philanthropy in an economy squeezed by shortfalls?

The average citizen may feel as though giving is the last item on the priority list. And yet, for many, giving to others is a demand difficult to overlook. Jesus counseled: "If you give to others, you will be given a full amount in return. It will be packed down, shaken together, and spilling over into your lap. The way you treat others is the way you will be treated" (Luke 6:38, Contemporary English Version). Everyone has opportunities to give. And regardless of one's financial situation, the simple act of helping another brings the kind of return that can't be quantified.

Perhaps that's why a recent news headline on CNN.com, featuring a family from Atlanta is so heartwarming: "Sale of 1 house will help 30 villages." When the 15-year-old daughter began to challenge her family to think about ways they could make a difference in the world, her mom came up with the idea of selling their dream home and donating half of the proceeds (some $800,000) to a chosen charity. While this was no easy decision, the entire family backed the idea and recently moved into a home half the size of their former one. The money from the sale is slated to go toward creating sustainable solutions for 30 villages in Africa.

Many people might say it's easy for the wealthy to give, but not at all practical for those who are just barely making it. And it might be equally easy to fall into the trap of envying those who seem to have more than enough to give. Again, Jesus' promise is reassuring: "If you give to others, you will be given a full amount in return" - spilling over, no less! His words explain the divine law that supports the spirit of true giving.

A wealthy tax collector, known for embezzling funds for his own gain, once came to Jesus, climbing a tree just to get a glimpse of the Master as he spoke to a large crowd. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.