When I ask someone why they want to get control of their money, I get a lot of different answers:

To travel.
To retire with dignity.
To be free from worry.
So our kids can have all the opportunities we had, and more.
So we can have more blow money.
So we can live comfortably.

With most of their answers, folks plan to live like no one else, so later they can live like no one else.  That is awesome.  I love when people catch the vision, believe they can make a change, and they have a strong goal they want to work towards.  It’s compelling, and it’s powerful.

Even more fun is when people talk about living like no one else so they can give like no one else.  Why do you want to get control of your money?

To make a difference in someone else’s life.
Because we want to adopt one day.
Because we really care about humanitarian missions, and we want to be free to do that.
So I can give freely to people in need without worrying about if I’m hurting myself financially.
Because we care about the mission of our church in the community, and we want to do more.
I’m really passionate about _________, and I want to be able to support it financially.

When I hear this, I realize that these folks have a new revelation on their money.  Their perspective on money has grown from just them to the community and world around them.  It’s a game-changing perspective.  Without a doubt, giving is important.  It’s no longer just about what they can get, and how much of it, but it’s about what they can do for others.

It’s a big change when you realize that money doesn’t stop with you.  Money is a tool to be used for the good of your family and others.  Generosity changes us – it makes us bigger and better people.  Stinginess makes us small, inwardly focused people.

R.G. LeTourneau, earth-moving machine inventor, was fond of saying, “It’s not how much of my money I give to God, but how much of God’s money I keep for myself.”  This demonstrated a deep understanding that the money he had wasn’t just for his sake and enjoyment, but for the good of other people as well.

But you know what, when you give, good things happen!  There’s a lot of great benefits to giving!  I can’t explain it!  I didn’t make up the rules, it just happens that way!

We’ve made a habit of giving, practiced the discipline of it, and it’s changed who we are and enriched our lives greatly!

I am all about living like no one else, believe me.  But taking it to another level and giving like no one else is a really special thing.

Where can you be intentional about giving this Christmas season?