For Lent this year, my wife and I are giving an equal amount of money to World Relief any time we spend money on a non-essential item for ourselves or our kids. Will you join us?
I noticed when Christmas rolled around that we have no problem spending money very easily on things we didn’t need. Toys and trinkets for our kids when they already have so many toys and trinkets that they don’t appreciate. Picking up another shirt. Going out to eat. Ordering a $5 beer.
I’m not saying any of these things are bad or are wrong or need to be stopped. It just surprised me how easily it was to spend money (consistently) on ourselves on things we didn’t need, without even thinking about it. Compared to when the opportunity arose to give money to somewhere like say, World Relief, or any number of other opportunities, the answer was usually something like, “Well…um…well it’s not in the budget…er…um…” Now, I am all for budgets and you can’t give to everything, but why didn’t I care about the “budget” when it was time to drop $30 on dinner out or $15 on a book, or $2-6 for a coffee, or $30 on golf, or $10 on a toy for my kid. That money goes away like exhaling oxygen.
We spend money the way our culture tells us. And that’s where Lent comes in.
Lent is a beautiful interruption. It’s an invitation to be transformed by the renewing of our mind, so that we don’t conform to the pattern of this world.
From March 6th – April 21st, when I buy something non-essential for me or my family, I’m going to donate an equal amount of money to World Relief. (https://worldrelief.org/give)
World Relief helps the most vulnerable, in the US and around the world, with a strategy of working through the local church to impact the poor and oppressed with the gospel and indigenous, sustained development. World Relief touches all the bases.
My non-essential items include things like Doritos, movie tickets, restaurants, coffee, beer, toys for my kids, most clothing purchases, and a whole bunch of stuff I’m not even thinking of. If I spend $3 on Doritos, $3 goes to World Relief. If I spent $100 on a half marathon, $100 goes to World Relief. You get the idea.
My hope in this journey is to look at money and people differently. To be more aware. To be more content and live more simply. And to help transform the lives of the most vulnerable.
If you would like to go on this Lent adventure with me, please leave a comment below of “I’m in.” (Comment anonymously is an option.)