A Fulfilling Life*

People like to imagine what it would be like to have money. When the lottery numbers get into high nine figures, interviewers ask people as they buy their tickets, “What would you do with the money if you won?”  Those dreams vary. Some would buy an expensive car or boat, others want to travel. There are even those who dream of becoming philanthropic.

Philanthropy offers a unique opportunity to enrich our lives by fulfilling our desire to make the world a better place.  People give for many reasons, and some may be more altruistic than others.

Some give to receive a tax deduction–with mixed effectiveness, depending on the gift. Others seek to leave a physical legacy–they want to see their name on a building, or to honor an important person in their life. And many give because they feel it is scripturally commanded.

There are also people who give to a specific need, a cause to support:  Missionary outreach, Medical research, natural disaster relief, and even political issues attract philanthropic support. 

As Christians, we may add to these reasons. Some give hoping to atone for their sins, or seek blessings promised in scripture. We give to support our church family and help fund ministries within our fellowship. And some give simply because they love to give. Giving freely releases our hearts to know joy.

When we give with an open heart, we find more joy. Giving for selfish reasons may generate immediate gratification, but when we give beyond our own personal benefit, we find greater satisfaction.  Blessings flow to those who give enthusiastically. . . “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Matthew 6:21)

A giving life is a fulfilled life. God did not design us to be burdened by the things of this world. We are made free when we live generously. 

*Used with permission: ©Gwendolyn Clemmons Irvine, CA ·Posted Mon, March 15, 2021


Where does your joy and fulfilling life begin? With generosity?

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