From Nick Kristof on Saturday:
This holiday season is a time to examine who’s been naughty and who’s been nice, but I’m unhappy with my findings. The problem is this: We liberals are personally stingy.
Liberals show tremendous compassion in pushing for generous government spending to help the neediest people at home and abroad. Yet when it comes to individual contributions to charitable causes, liberals are cheapskates.
To quote Don Suber (emphasis mine)…
A liberal columnist admits that conservatives give money generously to charities,while liberals give lip service.
The late West Virginia columnist L.T. Anderson once observed that it is easy to be generous with other people’s money.
Which explain why Dick Cheney can give away $6 million in one year to charities (75% of his income) while his predecessor could not even give away $1,000 one year and why his successor averaged $369 a year in such donations (0.25% of income).
The liberal compassion is taxing others to give to others.
So, my suggestion: pick a church, stick with it, give God your first fruits (that would be a tithe… literally, “ten percent”) of your income before Uncle Sam takes his bite.
You might be surprised how He rewards obedience and even how it forces a little financial management into your life.
I know of few churches that build new “spires” with their tithe income. I know our new church was built years ago with funds that were given above and beyond tithing. The rest goes for weekly operations, missions, and, especially this time of year, assistance to those who are in less fortuante circumstances. People also contribute a lot of personal time and effort to these causes.
I leave you with this word from the book of James, 1:19-27:
19My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,20for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.21Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
22Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
23Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror24and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.25But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it–he will be blessed in what he does.
26If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.27Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
Have a blessed Christmas.