losing the giving wars {day 16 of 31}

There are a few truths I wish everyone knew:

1. You will never be happy with more, more, more. The happiest place is right smack dab on the Line of Just Enough.

2. Giving will bring you more joy than pretty much anything else ever.

3. You can’t out-give God.

Seriously, people. My family and I had several pretty cool opportunities this week/weekend to give and bless people and all of that, and HOLY COW if God didn’t just turn it all upside down and give us back way more than we gave. I’m not just talking about financial provision (although there was lots of that), but love and encouragement and fun and fellowship and GOOD WORDS.

So, let’s chat about giving for a minute. I’m forever blogging about ways you can give to my favorite ministries (most of which happen to be in Cambodia), but today I thought I’d give you all a chance to share your favorite places to give. Then hopefully I can combine them all in a post, so we’ve got them all in one place.

So, if you’re so inclined, please share:

1. Your favorite place to give (and what you love about it).

OR

2. A cool giving story (like a time God out-gave you).

Or both! And have a great Tuesday!

33 thoughts on “losing the giving wars {day 16 of 31}

  1. Beth

    My favorite place to give right now is Mount Clare Christian School! Operated by our church but supported by many Christians. Tuition is just $25 a month/$250 a year so the locals can attend. In fact, you have to be a local or a church member to attend – it is limited to the inner-city neighborhood surrounding the school. The actual tuition per child is around $3,000 a year, not $250 a year, and that is with our teachers making a not-guaranteed very, very modest salary. Watching the teachers sacrifice for the children and watching God supply their needs is one of my favorite things! http://www.mountclarechristian.org/

  2. Dee

    my church that is a growing, vibrant church active both in domestic ministries throughout Jacksonville and Asia’s Hope..

  3. Stephanie

    We had been putting $3.00 aside each paycheck so we could do something special for our World Vision kid for Christmas, but we were taking it out of our tithe. We decided NOT to do that a few months ago, and take it out of the “extra” in our budget. Even though things are tight, I can clearly see God’s hand of provision on our finances. Even something small, like my desire for a piano, He has taken care of this year (I got a 61-key keyboard!). Medical bills have been smaller than we expected. More website work for hubby, etc. He’s even provided a way for us to get the supplements we need for hubby’s recently diagnosed genetic defect.

  4. Kelly s

    We try to give generously, often at the expense of saving for the future (retirement, college, etc)

    Last month I entered a contest on Facebook and we won 1529 dollars for my daughters college fund! God is so good!

      1. brooke

        sure thing! i’ve only been involved in the food and clothing distribution areas, but they also have medical tables as well. i’m only a laborer, so i have no organizational info to share, but I’d love to chat with you about it!

  5. valerie (in TX)

    Oh, there are so MANY ministries doing wonderful work, aren’t there? Right now our favorite place to give is to Ebenezer Children’s Ministry in Kibuku, Uganda. Some of your readers may be familiar with Canaan Children’s Home in Jinja, Uganda. George Kooli was the director at Canaan for many years, and he has recently started a new ministry – Ebenezer – that takes in children, mainly birth thru 5 years old, who have been infected with or affected by HIV. Many are orphans, but some have parents who just aren’t able to care for them.

    George and his wife and wonderful, compassionate, godly people who love children and desire to serve Jesus through serving “the least of these”. Since this is a brand new ministry, their funds are severely limited. George used all of his savings to rent the home where he, his wife and daughter, and 20 HIV children now live. They have no electricity, no running water, and no reliable source of income.

    Thanks for this awesome sharing idea, Marla!

    1. Marla Taviano

      Oh, wow. Thanks for sharing this, Valerie. We just got home from dropping my MIL off at the airport. She’s heading to Kenya for a month. Along with Cambodia, we have a real heart for Africa–Kenya, Uganda, and Zimbabwe in particular.

      Does Ebenezer have a website?

      1. valerie (in TX)

        They actually don’t have a website yet. That’s one of the things on their “a million things we still need” list 🙂 There is a non-profit here in the U.S. (Hope Grafted In) that’s helping them with their donations and child sponsorships, though. HGI is also very new and doesn’t have their website up yet either, but here is a blog post from one of the founders that tells a little more about their non-profit: http://www.brownstreeintheforest.blogspot.com/2012/07/hope-grafted-in.html
        And here’s another post that tells about the ministries they’re helping (including Ebenezer):
        http://brownstreeintheforest.blogspot.com/2012/04/haven-of-hope-child-sponsorship.html

  6. Danielle

    We give to Heifer International once a year as Christmas “gifts” to our family. I love that Heifer doesn’t give handouts, they educate people in a sustainable vocation that will both feed their family, provide income to raise themselves out of poverty, AND Heifer recipients are required to “pass on the gift” of their animal to another trained person in their community. It’s community growth in sustainable ways. Love it!

    Also, we keep a separate bank account just for giving as needs arise around us. Anything extra we make that isn’t my husband’s usual income goes in that account. It started out as our adoption savings, but God laid it on our hearts to use it to bless others who are raising money for adoption, or have moving expenses, or are struggling to pay their bills this month. Since it’s extra income, we don’t have to think about if it fits in the budget or not, it’s just blessing money – God blessed us with it, we get to pass that blessing on to others!

  7. Jessica

    We love to give to missionaries who we know. There’s something really special about being a part of someone’s ministry. I love to see them have enough money for cool presents for their kids , nice kitchen appliances, quality clothes.
    Our story? That we’ve always had enough. We’ve never gone without. Our kids have alway been warm and fed. And it has nothing to do with money.

    1. Marla Taviano

      You’re so right. The personal connection makes it so much better. That’s what I love about “our” ministries in Cambodia. We’ve been there, we know these people, we love them like crazy. It’s a joy and honor to give to them.

    2. Bethany

      I love how you said it has nothing to do with money. It’s all God. God can choose to give us money or He can give us food or second-hand clothes or make our bill smaller or show me I don’t actually need something. God provides. And it may not always be through a paycheck which is the way I had been praying He’d provide. That way’s not as much fun when you think about it. 🙂

  8. Bethany

    We were entering our first month of unemployment and I asked my husband if we should hold off our monthly support for our girl in Cambodia until he gets a job. He said to keep supporting her. That month he sold EVERYTHING he had put on Craigslist–our pop-up camper, tires he had had listed for several months, a lawn tractor, power wheels truck, and mini-electric go-kart–and someone anonymously gave us $500 in cash. We actually made more that month than he usually makes!

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