Encouraging Progress in the Quest for Simple and Generous Living

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Many of my posts are challenges.  I want to challenge us to to reconsider commonly held assumptions.

The message here at Money Help for Christians is not unique to this blog.  There are other writers out there encouraging people towards more simple and generous living.

I guess four people specifically come to mind:

  • Francis Chan. In the book Crazy Love, he talks about how when he returned from his first trip to Africa, they sold their house and bought a new house half the size – so that they could have more to give.
  • David Platt.  In the book Radical, he shares that he also put his house up for sale to find something smaller and simpler.
  • Ronald Sider.  A man who’s fought for social justice, simple living, and generosity.  He introduced the concept of the Graduated Tithe.
  • Rick Warren.  Even though Rick hasn’t written much about the topic, he’s living it.  He currently lives off 10% of his income and gives the rest away.  He even drives a four year old Ford car (at the time of the interview I read).  How many people with an opportunity to be a millionaire would drive around in a four year old car?

What we may be seeing here is the beginning of a new movement in Christianity.  A small group of early adapters who are fighting against the temptations of materialism.

Last weekend I was doing a seminar in a church in Fort Worth.  I was impressed and thankful for the experience.

Why?

People were deeply wrestling with the serious issues of wealth, money, and responsibilities.

These were professionals, successful in several different fields who sense a deep responsibility to be responsible with all they have.

I heard the story of one man who downsized his home.  It was a move towards simpler living and more opportunity to be involved in God’s Kingdom work.

Please don’t get me wrong.  In my lifetime, I’ve met a lot of people who’ve given a lot of money and time to different Christian ministries.

But it was the sacrificial nature of this type of giving that encouraged me.  And, fortunately, I’m seeing it more and more in the lives of others.

In fact, it forced me to ask myself – when was the last time I sacrificed anything to give?  It’s such a blessing to be encouraged by the generosity of others.

Tim Challies says we should “give enough that it is sacrificial.”

I think that’s correct.

I guess I just wanted to say thank you.

Thank you to those of you who read this blog who have contacted me by email and inspired me with your journey towards generous giving.  I find it encouraging and motivating.

Thank you to those of you who I’ve met in ‘real life’ who have modeled simple and generous living.

May God bless us as we seek to spiritually transform ourselves and positively impact the Kingdom through our financial management.

Do you have any other encouraging stories to share of people who have made significant life changes in how they manage their finances?

Comments

  1. Ted Calvert says

    I have a friend in the wealthy category and along with simple living has not sold his large house but more than anyone I know uses it to host Christian thinkers and small groups of people who can listen to and interact with them. I amazed at the number and variety of people I come across who have been to one of his gatherings and have a more godly direction in life because of it.

  2. says

    I’ve met a few millionaires who drive around in old half-ton trucks and wear ragged clothing. You would never know they were wealthy by the way they acted or by the things they had. They certainly never flaunted their wealth. It was refreshing.

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