As the controversial migrant caravan marches north on this Election Day, I’m making a $5,000 donation to World Relief. The gift to the humanitarian aid organization that helps immigrants and refugees isn’t a political statement, though. It’s a decision rooted in faith and the realization that political divisiveness has caused charitable giving to become too insular. I want my charitable giving to cross the political divide and international borders to reach those who need it the most.
The Rich Fool Balancing Financial Independence and Radical Generosity
A personal spending limit – a self-imposed annual consumption cap or “salary” – limits lifestyle inflation, and directs extra income into higher saving and giving rates. It’s a money guardrail that focuses spending on basic needs and fulfilling discretionary expenses, and it leaves much less room for empty consumerism. For now, I’m setting an annual spending finish line of $100,000, with the goal of reducing it over the next few years.
When it comes to generosity, “greatness” requires us to see a need and immediately meet the need, without regard for social standing or our own desires. If we want to live more generous lives, we should imitate children, who view the world through a filter not yet corrupted by their own ambitions and fears. My son’s response to a homeless man reminded me of our tendency to over-complicate giving, and how simple the logic really should be.
There’s one significant difference between the prosperity gospel and what the Bible really says about material rewards. While the prosperity gospel encourages people to give more so that they can get (and spend) more, God really provides more so that we can give more. It’s a subtle but hugely important distinction that hinges on motivation and heart.
On this Father’s Day, I wanted to better understand how stay-at-home dads get over the psychological barrier of not being traditional breadwinners. In interviews with friends, I found a common theme in their stories: To take the bold step of becoming a stay-at-home dad, a husband must believe in his wife. It’s only when a husband sees the full potential of his spouse can he feel confident enough to leave behind one of the primary drivers of his identity and purpose: his own career.