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Experience the

joy of

giving Now & Beyond

Enough for us—abundance for others who do not have enough


Key Scripture verses on giving All references from the New Revised Standard Version

John Wesley’s three-point sermon on the use of money: 1. Gain all you can. 2. Save all you can. 3. Give all you can.

“God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that you may always have enough of everything and may provide in abundance for every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8 In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.” Luke 3:11 Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Luke 12:33,34 Thieves must give up stealing; rather let them labor and work honestly with their own hands, so as to have something to share with the needy. Ephesians 4:28

What is stewardship? Stewardship is what I do with God’s ownership. Giving is what I do in obedience to God’s command. Giving is what a steward does, but giving does not make a steward.

[It is a question of a fair balance between] your present abundance and their need, so that their abundance may be for your need, in order that there may be a fair balance. 2 Corinthians 8:14 But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to make this freewill offering? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you. 1 Chronicles 29:14 They are to do good, to be rich in good works, generous, and ready to share, thus storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of the life that really is life. 1 Timothy 6:18,19

The idea for the cover page is from the Generous Giving website: www.generousgiving.org

“It is a common idea, especially in the western world, that a person has absolute authority over his own stuff. But the reality is very different. The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it (Psalm 24:1). Whatever we have has come from the Lord’s hand, and only indirectly by our earning (1 Chronicles 29:14). Our wealth belongs to us in the same way that a child’s bedroom belongs to the child. The room actually belongs to the parent, but the child is given temporary, accountable charge over it.” (www.generousgiving.org)


Investing in eternity (Randy Alcorn, The Treasure Principle)

1. God owns everything, and I am His money manager. Scripture talks very clearly about God’s ownership (Psalm 24:1, Lev. 25:23, Haggai 2:8). Stewardship is about the fact that I am God’s money manager and He trusts me enough to put my name on the account with His, and I need to be careful not to misappropriate His funds. “Remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth” (Deut. 8:18). Not only is the money from God but the very skills and abilities to make money are from God! You and I owe every skill and talent and every financial success to our Creator. “Now it is required that those who have been given a trust (that is, the steward or money manager) must prove faithful” (1 Cor.4:2). So none of us is self-employed, none of us is our own boss. We report to Him, and He gives us our job performance evaluations.

2. Giving is the only antidote to materialism. Paul said: “People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires…” (I Tim. 6:9). Materialism is joyless selfdestruction, and Paul offers the joyful antidote: GIVING! “Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share…so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life” (I Tim. 6:18).

3. God does not prosper me to raise my standard of living, but to raise my standard of giving. We really solve two problems when we give. First, we solve the problem of us having too much. Second, we solve the problem of others having too little. “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35) God graciously provides for us so that we can invest in eternity.

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Two sources of gifts 1. Gifts of cash flow Availability of cash does not determine what we have for disposal. For many of us, our daily cash flow could be very tight, causing us to think that there is not much available to give.

2. Gifts of net worth With rare exceptions, the value of a person’s net assets increases yearly, making the gifting of property a wise investment in eternity. Every year there is a $60 billion increase in disposable income in Christian hands, after all expenses have been paid (Chris Duncan, Saddleback Church). This wealth is invested in appreciable assets which again add to the value of a Christian’s estate.

A word about estate distribution Ray Lyne, Christian Estate Planner, says that the average inheritance is used up in 18 months, the same as lottery winnings. An inheritance is getting something you have not paid for and costs you nothing. The education of children, equipping them to work, is their inheritance. We have no obligation to the next generation except to educate them. The Bible statement about parents laying up for their children refers to the family farm. They were not to sell the family farm out from under the children. View the testimony of R.G. LeTourneau at <www.generousgiving.org> Click on Audio/Video and then Short Biographies on Film under Streaming Media. Le Tourneau is quoted as saying that he never wanted to see personal security in this life.

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Our secular government has set the example of generosity Did you know that, for all gifts to charity above $200 annually, the government contributes 40 cents, and you contribute only 60 cents? (Approx. amount based on current tax rates, and varies from province to province) The 40 cents per dollar is deducted from your income taxes.

Take Note:

Case Study in Government Generosity (2003 Ontario approximations) Assume a taxable income of $32000 Taxes before credits: 32,000 X 22.05% Calculation of credits: Basic Amount 7756 EI 672 CPP 1411 9839 Credits 9839 X 22.05% Taxes before any gifting Credit required to reduce taxes to nil 200 X 22.05% 44 12060 X 40.16% 4843 Gifts of $12260 are needed Comparison of income remaining No Gifting 32000-4887(just taxes) Max. Gifts 32000-12260(just gifts) Difference The donor releases only $7373 to generate $12,260 for the Lord’s work!

7056

2169 4887 4887

27113 19740 7373

1. Our federal and provincial governments encourage charitable giving by allowing very substantial tax credits. [AWESOME] 2. You are allowed tax deductions to a maximum of 75% of your income, with any unused receipts claimable for the next five years. [SOME CHRISTIANS GIVE THIS MUCH AND MORE] This provision applies to any gifts above those that are used to reduce taxable income to nil. 3. In the year of death, this maximum is increased to 100% of income, with any unused portion claimable in the preceding year. [A TAX-FREE STATUS GIVEN BY GOVERNMENT TO THE VERY GENEROUS]

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How do I increase my standard of giving …and take the focus off my standard of living? STEP ONE: Prepare a Budget

STEP TWO : Determine your net worth

Consider: 1. Lack of a budget usually results in undisciplined spending 2. Overuse of credit cards is a problem 3. Budget 10% for savings (if debt-free) 4. Paying down debt is a priority 5. Never budget to increase debt levels (there are three exceptions to this general rule) Acceptable debt creation i. Purchasing of a residence or appreciable real estate ii. Funding of education iii. Investing in tools to earn a living 6. Budget 10% for the tithe (whether debt-free or not) 7. Choose a budget level for giving (above the tithe; the Old Testament tithe was never optional) 8. Ensure adequate cash is available (no deficit budgeting) 9. Life-style changes may be necessary 10. Teach budgeting to your children

Consider: 1. Cash and everything convertible to instant cash 2. Short- or medium-term securities 3. Retirement investments, including CSV of life insurance 4. Personal Assets (everything, including antiques & collectibles) Deduct: 5. Short-term obligations (credit cards, unpaid bills, etc.) 6. Long-term obligations (mortgages, asset financing, etc.) Equals: 7. Net worth [PONDER THE RESULTS!] 8. Net worth is almost always more than imagined 9. Stewardship begins with net worth, not cash 10. Plan your stewardship based on personal net worth goals

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STEP THREE: Plan to Give (Planning to give does not include spontaneous giving)

c. There are many ways to give: i. Transfer ownership of paid-up policy ii. Transfer ownership of policy with premiums still owing (donor pays and is receipted) iii. Purchase a new policy and name the charity as owner (premiums are receiptable) iv. Name the charity as primary beneficiary of policy (no tax receipt until death)

Consider: 1. A Will (a top priority even if you do not plan to give); Powers of Attorney for property and personal care should be in place at time of will.There are enormous problems for the family of a person who dies intestate. (Do you know what an intestacy will would say?) 3. Charitable Annuity a. Adequate provision must first be a. Various annuity structures provide made for your spouse and dependent periodic payments for a specified time children (I Tim. 5:8) [to maintain lifeor for life. style] b. Depending on structure, a portion of b. It is not good stewardship to include the premium is tax-receiptable and a adult children in your will portion c. Prayerfully determine your allocations of the income is tax-free. to the charities of your choice, and c. Donor receives less income than decide whether it be a percentage or normal, dollar amount with the difference available for the d. Remember that a will can be charity contested d. A combination of annuity and life e. Giving only in your will robs you of insurance is also possible the joy of giving substantially in this The government-imposed will 4. Charitable Remainder life Trust f. Update your will • Spouse (declared trustee) files a performance bond of double the a. Transfer ownership of an OFTEN value of the estate asset to charity now, but • Spouse gets up to $200,000 or one-third retain benefit from that 2. Life Insurance • Spouse must sell all non-cash assets, asset until death a. Many people have including all real estate (cannot sell b. Tax receipt today is the unneeded insurance to self) present value of the coverage on repaid • Children get their share of cash, minus court fees, upon reaching the age of market value at death debts, income majority replacement, grown • Spouse must apply to court for 5. Real estate children permission to use children’s money to a. Personal residence can be b. Cash surrender maintain and educate them given through a will or values increase over • Public Guardian can question and charitable remainder trust time act against any of the spouse’s trusteeship decisions b. Gifts of real estate are at appraised value


6. Personal Property a. Coin collection, valuable stamps, jewelry, vehicles, etc. b. Receipted at fair market value or appraised values 7. Loan Agreements a. Charity receives all income from the principal amount b. Principal is returned to lender at agreed time (no tax receipt) 8. Qualified Securities a. Deemed to be disposed of, and receipted, at fair market value b. Only part of capital gain is taxable, but a full tax credit is allowed c. Government requires only one-quarter of the capital gain to be included in income instead of one-half as in all other cases 9. RRSP’s, RRIF’s, pension funds, etc. a. Some people have sufficient sources of income without these additional funds b. Including these accumulated amounts in a will can greatly reduce or eliminate income taxes at death 10. Cash Gifts a. Make this a regular item in your budget b. This is unrelated to impulse giving and is never reduced by it

Highly recommended books: Randy Alcorn, The Treasure Principle: Discovering the Secret of Joyful Giving (Sisters, Ore.: Multnomah Publishers, 2001) Randy Alcorn, Money, Possessions, and Eternity (Rev. ed. Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale House Publishers, 2003) John Piper, Money: The Currency of Christian Hedonism (Chattanooga, Tenn.: Generous Giving, 2005) Ron Blue with Jodie Berndt, Generous Living: Finding Contentment through Giving (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan Publishing House, 1997) Other recommended books: Warren W. Wiersbe, comp., Classic Sermons on Stewardship The Kregel Classic Sermons Series (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1999) R.G. LeTourneau, Mover of Men and Mountains: The Autobiography of R.G. LeTourneau (Chicago, Ill.: Moody Press, 1972) Michael O’Hurley-Pitts, The Faithful Steward: Reclaiming Stewardship for Christ’s Kingdom (Elmira, ON.: Canadian Council of Christian Charities, 2002) John R. W. Stott, Stott on Stewardship: Ten Principles of Christian Giving (Chattanooga, Tenn.: Generous Giving, 2003) Valuable websites: www.generousgiving.org www.crown.org www.csservices.ca www.cccc.org/contents.php?area=x&id=1010

GIVING IS AN INVESTMENT, NOT AN EXPENSE.


Do Your Givin’ While You’re Livin’ Then You’re Knowin’ Where It’s Goin’ I’ll tell you the story of Frederick R. Birch, Who once was the wealthiest man in his church. He owned hotels and factories, bullion and stock, Gilt edged investments as solid as rock. And “most of his wealth,” he so frequently said, “Shall go to the Lord just as soon as I’m dead.” So he made out his will, bequests large and small, Not a good cause was missed, he remembered them all.

But the day after he was one hundred and seven, A germ slipped on through and sent Frederick to heaven. So they laid Frederick R. Birch low in his grave And his relatives gathered in solemn enclave.

Lawyer Smith read the will in a deep voice and round, But there wasn’t a named legatee to be found. The little home church he had loved in his youth Had closed its front doors and ceased spreading To his own little church in the village he planned, the truth. New carpet and pews, and an organ so grand. For his pastor a new house His pastor had died penniless long before with rooms large and nice, And the Sunday School library existed no more. To the Sunday School library, a generous slice. The local college they found when they wrote, Was long ago sold on account of a note. Another large gift to their own local college Where young folks were taught So his ungodly relatives each took a slice the essentials of knowledge. And his lawyer forgot and paid himself twice, The youth group at church, And there wasn’t a friend and there wasn’t a board, room and tuition, mourner For any of them choosing to join foreign Not even the paper boy down on the corner. missions. And Satan, still smiling, Now Satan stood by with a devilish grin, turned to tasks fresh and new. Seeing all that old Frederick R. planned to put in. Now brothers, let this be a lesson to you. “Ahem,” said the devil concealing a smile, Give all that you can “I’ll see that this old rascal lives a long while.” while you’re still ‘live and strong And update your will often, So Satan chased off every menacing germ Frederick R. Birch was wrong! And sprayed with hellseptic each threatening worm, ‘Til not a disease could get near brother Birch And his excellent health was the talk of the church. At sixty, Frederick was hearty and hale, At seventy, he still hadn’t started to fail. At eighty his step was still youthful and spry, At ninety they wondered if he’d ever die.


To book a seminar for your church or small group meeting, please contact us at the address below. We are not experts—only stewards with a heart to see God’s work done through His faithful and committed servants. We greatly desire to serve those servants.

www.cccc.org A financial planning booklet courtesy of OM Canada 212 West Street • Port Colborne, ON • L3K 4E3 • Tel: 1–877–487–7777 info@cdn.om.org • www.omcanada.org



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