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Less Greed, More Generosity


During the month of October, I’m following along with Edie & Ruth on their 31 Days of Less & More journey. I’d love for you to join in by reading the posts and completing the projects, or just sit back and read along each day.

Less Greed

It’s easy to give from our abundance, but true giving requires sacrifice. This is something God has really been teaching me in recent years.

Since I’m not one who is very attached to many items, giving stuff to other people is fun, but it’s relatively easy to do. For instance, if I’m going to be getting rid of an item anyway, is it really a sacrifice to pass it onto a friend instead of tossing it in the Goodwill box? No, not really.

Giving of my time and effort, on the other hand, is an area where I often struggle. I can be stingy when it comes to giving of myself or setting aside my neatly planned out day to meet a need in someone’s life.

When a child needs me to drop everything I’m doing to help them with something, I can be feel frustrated or interrupted. Or when my husband calls and asks me to run an errand for him, it’s my natural reaction to feel irritated.

For me, that’s often the giving that matters the most. Because it’s giving where it really costs me something.

However, every time I give in a way that requires sacrifice, I’m so very blessed in the end. And it inspires me to let go even more and live with arms stretched out wide.


More Generosity

When Jesse and I traveled to the Dominican Republic one thing that struck me was how generous these people were. They barely had anything and yet they were constantly offering us what little they had.

And they weren’t just giving us their leftovers; they were offering us their very best — the best chair to sit on or the best food they had to eat. It deeply challenged and convicted me.

I want to live my life with arms open wide. Willingly and gladly giving of my best for others. Holding nothing back. And at the end of my life, I want to have used up everything I was given — for others.

For more on this topic, check out Ruth’s post on Less Greed and Edie’s post on More Giving. I promise you’ll be inspired and blessed!

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  • Heather says:

    Beautiful post! So true!

  • Lisa says:

    “And at the end of my life, I want to have used up everything I was given — for others.”

  • Great point. I’m totally there with you. I feel like my mom was always quick to drop whatever she was doing to meet the needs of one of her 5 children. I struggle to do that with 2 kids.

  • Guest says:

    What a great post, Crystal. I knew someone many years ago who was well to do. This individual gave amazing gifts and was very generous with money but incredibly stingy with time. Never seemed to understand that what people really wanted was to spend time together. It had a big impact on me and how I’ve approached my life.

  • Stephanie says:

    Crystal you are a beautiful person who is such an inspiration! Thank you for this post!

  • Cate R. says:

    Thank you for your vulnerability here as well as the encouragement, and showing that struggles with giving can take different forms. Hubby and I started tithing to church recently, really for the first time, the whole 10%. Honestly it’s been rough. We live on one modest income, we’re deep in debt and there are lots of things we could use that money for (for example, we’re (somewhat unexpectedly) expecting another baby and have almost nothing in terms of baby items… oh and the fact that we have only one car that won’t fit another car seat when the baby comes). Tithing doesn’t make any sense from the world’s perspective and it doesn’t make much sense to me either a lot of times. But we’ve adapted out of necessity. I went from being able to buy a clothing item on sale at Target to being strictly limited to thrift store prices. I feel like I just threw my hands up in the air and said “Ok, God. You know we have these goals that are collecting dust. I don’t know if we’ll ever be able to pay our debt or buy our own home or ever have a car that fits our whole family, but in a way, I don’t care anymore. The money’s yours to begin with, and you know we’re already not doing so great with it anyway.” I’m not going to sit here waiting for God to dazzle me with a magic show. But hubby and I feel like we’re finally reaching one of our goals; being able to give sacrificially.

  • Jodi says:

    This post touched me. Thanks you for writting this I needed to hear it today. I have a family member of mine who is very generous with monetary “stuff”, lacks the ability to give of his time. I can’t change him, but I change how I do things in my life with my family:)

  • Anonymous says:

    I volunteer and so do the other members in my family. We volunteer 1x a wk and let me tell you there are times I don’t want too. Yet God is so merciful and gives us the strength we need. The Holy Spirit will remind me that I am saved and the majority of the people we talk with are lost. What great opportunities we have to share Christ! I can honestly say nothing gives me more joy than serving and doing the will of the Father. I have always made the effort to volunteer and would even tell my spouse that I would rather serve then get paid working. So many people we encounter are hurting and going through very great difficulties. Some many come from broken homes. Our goal is to give them hope by sharing the love of Christ. Thanks for sharing your heart!

  • guidelovepray says:

    This has been on my heart recently too – giving our best to God and to others; not giving the leftovers. In organizing our church food pantry, I’m always surprised at how people give open, expired, and half used up food. It’s like they are just trying to get rid of their junk. And it creates more work for the volunteers, having to wade through it all and throw it away. But isn’t that (the act of passing off our junk) all of us, in some way? I don’t want God or anyone to be getting my leftovers, I want them to get the good stuff, the very best of me. Thanks for posting this 🙂

  • cher says:

    Your writing is just wonderful! Good for you for living with such purpose! God bless your sincere kind heart and all of your generosity and love!!

  • Kylie Ofiu says:

    Tongans are similar – they give you the very best despite having very little themselves.

    I have been giving more of my time and have found it so incredibly rewarding. I look forward to my volunteer work every week. I have had a couple of days where the morning nothing has gone right, I feel like crap and then I get there and it is so wonderful, I am so grateful to be there and they help me more than I feel I help them.

  • I love your perspective, Crystal and am so happy I happened upon your site!

    I agree that when you give out of your abundance, you it’s not really sacrificial. That’s why we give out of His abundance, which is infinite.

    Based on the parable of the Talents (Matthew 25), I think of myself as an investor of God’s money to help restore and heal the world — and God wants good returns! Just like communion is participation in Jesus’s sacrifice, our giving/investing is a participation in Jesus’s willing poverty and act of restoration. And by doing this, we get to experience the same joy that Jesus experienced in serving God (Matthew 12).

    Less greed, more generosity, more joy!

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