Wednesday, May 30, 2007

When is it Enough?

At what point do you draw the line and say, "That's it. I'm all tapped out. No more giving for me."

That wasn't a rhetorical question.

We got another letter from World Vision today. We get a lot of mail from them. I'd say 5 a week. We sponsor a child. We sometimes give to this project or that that they promote. I like the ministry they provide. But we've held to the one sponsored child we "adopted" back when we were broke and God told me it was time to remember there was someone else in the world that had it worse than me. It was a good lesson. But how much money do you give to a single organization? I figured aside from my occasional give-it-because-they-have-a-grant-that-octuples-it gift, I was done expanding my giving to that particular organization.

They threw a hook and line in and almost have me again. There is this specific girl...and if Hubs comes home and knows which one it is, I think we'll try to find a way to sponsor another.

I know we have it...somewhere. The occasinal soda we don't buy. The trip to the movies we don't take. The babysitter we don't hire. Really, we have it pretty good. So darn good that we forget we have it good.

But I wonder what God would have us, as Americans, do?

No more giving for me, God, you get your 10%, World Vision gets their share, Focus on the Family gets theirs, Samaritans Purse gets theirs, let's not forget that traveling minister and the guy on the street corner...

I know we should give and give freely. I know it isn't mine anyway. And who is to say that God didn't entrust it to us so that we could give it away? How much do we deserve to spoil ourselves with when His children are starving down the street and around the globe?

But if I give it all away, how do I pay my kids' tuition next year?

I don't have the answer. Most days it feels like I'm just scraping by. But ever since I saw Loveness' picture I've seen at least $35 that I didn't have to spend this month and I wonder....

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I've struggled with this myself.

I mean, I "technically" could survive wearing a burlap sack and socks. I could cut my own hair, sew my clothes, etc...

I brought this up to a group of Christian friends once and they asked me "what kind of witness would you be?".

Think about it: if you looked bedraggled and worn out, in the name of Christ, how many unbelievers would "want what you have"??

The fact is that we DO live in America. God gave us those blessings to enjoy. God calls us to use His money, that He gave to us, to glorify Him.

If someone thinks you must "suffer" can't buy yourself new clothes, or eat out on occasion, or go to a movie with your be a Christian, is that something they'll want to be? It CAN become a stumbling block for unbelievers.

Be wise with your money. Don't go deeply in to debt. Use it to do good. As God multiplies your bounty, multiply your giving.

But even a quick look through the Bible shows, clearly, that God doesn't call His own to give it all away. Joseph, King David, Solomon, Queen Esther and others are examples of people that were allowed to enjoy the blessings God gave.

The key is not making it about the "money", but keeping a tight hold on the fact that it's a blessing and it's not OUR'S.

God will let you know when He's calling you to give. But don't tell Him He's "wrong" when He invites you to enjoy what He's given.