Situation: How to Give?
Eugen from Kiev attended a Journey of Generosity last year. He wrote this week to ask, “How to properly dispose of funds if the Lord will increase the income of our family.”
Lee Turner, who has championed our efforts in the Russian-speaking world, provided these great insights. Thanks, Lee!
Scripture: Acts 20
Lee points out that “Acts 20:32-35 shows us that living the Gospel and leading a generous life are two sides of the same coin.”
Steps: Discerning Toward the Causes God Calls You To
1. Listen to His Voice.
This is a good question, thanks for asking us. As you know, Generosity Path never recommends any denomination, church, ministry or charity. We are neutral and urge JOG participants to actively ask God for guidance in prayer and scripture reading, and take time to listen to His voice for guidance.
2. Look at Biblical Guidance.
I believe the Bible is clear that Christians should give a minimum of 10% of gross income to their church. Some Bible scholars believe the true ‘tithe’ is 23.3% (see Numbers 18:21-32 & Exodus 30:30, Deuteronomy 14:23-27, and Deuteronomy 14:28-20).
3. Learn the Joy of Giving the Surplus.
As you may have heard during the JOG in the Tim Keller video on Acts 20, living the Gospel and leading a generous life are two sides of the same coin. Leading a generous life means being generous with our time, talent, treasure, network, everything. And extravagant giving brings great joy! If God blesses you with financial resources over and above the amount you feel God is calling you to give to your church, to whom should you give the surplus? It’s clearly a blessing, and probably a nudge from God, that you are asking yourself this question.
Leading a generous life means being generous with our time, talent, treasure, network, everything. And extravagant giving brings great joy!
4. Pray About the Passions God’s Given You.
Start by asking yourself another question: What causes are you passionate about, including your wife if you’re married? Helping orphans or prisoners or unwed mothers in a way that includes the hope of the Gospel? Supporting evangelism and discipleship in and through sports, fitness, and games? This is a broken world, and many people desperately need the hope and peace found in the Gospel.
Pray and try to identify one or two causes that you care about.
5. Build Relationships with Devoted Workers and Ministries.
Try to find Christian ministries or individuals who devote their lives to these causes. Volunteer your time in assisting these ministries or individuals.
Over time, as you get to know and trust them personally, and see the fruit of their labors, then you can pray and ask God to confirm to you that He wants you to support them financially. This is a process called ‘vetting’ a ministry or a missionary.
Lee Turner lives in Magnolia Texas just northwest of Houston with his Proverbs 31 wife of 34 years, Gerri. Their journey into radical whole-life Biblical generosity began in the summer of 2009 when Kyle Vann, a friend, invited them to the annual Generous Giving Celebration of Generosity conference. Lee is retired after a 40-year career in the oil & gas industry that enabled him to live in nine countries and travel to 72. He serves as a director or volunteer for several small ministries, and especially enjoys facilitating Journey of Generosity retreats in the Russian-speaking world for local supporters of ‘discipleship in and through sports.’