October 1, 2010

Learning to Give

While at church this past Sunday, we learned of a new opportunity to give.  A mission minded couple from our church will marry in a few weeks and spend their honeymoon ministering to orphans in Africa.  They have offered to take along medical supplies for burn victims.  Everyone has been invited to share in contributing to the supply.

Over lunch, we reviewed with our children the Biblical principles for giving beyond tithing and presented this upcoming opportunity.  We asked them to consider giving.  My husband and I had already planned to give some supplies from our family, but we wanted to present the children with an opportunity to give of their own accord.  There was no pressure and no further discussion.  We didn't know what choices they would make, and we waited. 

After lunch, the children dove into their spending money.  Some gave a lot and some a little.  However, the child who gave the least amount actually gave all she had.  It reminded me of the woman with the two coins that Jesus commended.  May I just insert here, that I did cry when I saw their pile of money.  It was substantial.

Later we went to the store, and they picked out medical supplies to give.  They waited in line with their choices, paid the cashier with their money, and carried the supplies home.  Next, they will give the soon to be newlyweds their contribution, and then the supplies are off to Africa!   

As parents, we are blessed to see our children repeatedly choose to give.  Every time they have been presented with opportunities to give to or serve at various charities and ministries, they have always been willing.  At an early age, we taught them to split their money three ways: tithing, saving, and spending.  The tithe is brought to church for the general offering.  The savings eventually makes it into their accounts.  However, the spending money is theirs to spend however they like.  Typically, it is used to buy some treasured item or trinket.  Instead, on this day, they gave it away to someone they have never seen.

After this latest giving opportunity, we decided to start a 'giving jar' for them.  Rather than sporadically presenting the children with opportunities as they arise, we will be able to consistently cultivate a giving lifestyle.  When the next opportunity to give arises, they will be prepared.  I can't wait to see where they will give next!


Since this jar sits in our kitchen, I opted to decorate it with some supplies we already had.  To cover the lid, I used an orange label, cut to fit, and red tape.  Then, with red ink I stamped a design on the top.  For the side, I cut another orange label with a simple decorative side design.  The letters are stickers left over from another project.  Due to the size of the letters, there was no room for anything else, but I suppose the one word 'give' sums up the jar's purpose.

This post has been shared at the Homemaking Link-Up of Raising Homemakers. 


  1. Great post. Maybe you can elaborate with me or in another post when and how you begin the allowance. I think we'd like to start in the next year.

    Also, thanks for the reminder of the need! I had forgotten!

  2. What a wonderful post, and I love the idea of the 'giving jar'!


Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

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