Raising Our Children to Be Givers in a Culture Infected by Affluenza

The next generation is growing up amid — and inheriting — vast wealth

“With no vision for the joy of giving and of investing in eternity, they can’t see that God’s purpose for prospering them is not so they can live in luxury, but so they can help others, support their churches, aid the poor, and reach the lost with the gospel.”

 

The next generation is growing up amid—and inheriting—vast wealth. Even many children in Christian families don’t see their parents give and are not taught and encouraged to give themselves. So they become keepers and accumulators, and essentially self-preoccupied materialists. They see the world as about themselves and expect to receive more and more things, appreciating them less and less.

With no vision for the joy of giving and of investing in eternity, they can’t see that God’s purpose for prospering them is not so they can live in luxury, but so they can help others, support their churches, aid the poor, and reach the lost with the gospel.

One of the best gifts we can give our children is to include them in our family giving decisions and instill in them the giving habit, and a vision for giving. Show them options and ask them to choose the one that sounds best for the family to send a special gift to. Get them involved by giving them ownership, working on projects, and earning money to give to the needy.

Giving shouldn’t be an add-on elective to the spiritual life; it should be a required course at the very core of life’s curriculum. If our children don’t learn about giving from us, then who will teach them?

Consider taking your kids on a missions trip. When our daughters were nine and seven, we took them on a two-month trip visiting missionaries in six countries. They have never forgotten it and it helped shaped their vision for Jesus and the world. So did sponsoring children through Compassion, who they corresponded with.

Consider these Scriptures:

– Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it (Proverbs 22:6).

– Teach them to your children and to their children after them (Deuteronomy 4:9).

– I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just (Genesis 18:19).

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