Five years ago a New York collective of cultural commentators and innovators launched a “movement.” Harnessing the power of social media and the generosity of people, the goal was to serve as a catalyst for positive change in communities around the country – and around the world. And so #GivingTuesday was birthed to…“amplify small acts of kindness…sharing our capacity to care for and empower one another.” [www.givingtuesday.org]
I wouldn’t tell anyone to stop writing a check as an act of kindness. I’d never dare to obstruct someone’s capacity to show that they care. However, I would encourage people to stop and think: Why give on Giving Tuesday?
In a godless universe, where only the fittest survive, every act of altruism is a thinly disguised demonstration of egoism. We only give in the short term to get in the longer term: we are ready to give a little now, if it helps us get what we want later. In a popular culture where God has been air-brushed out of the big picture, scratch the surface and Giving Tuesday is not really about helping others. Giving Tuesday is really about helping ourselves.
"In a godless Universe...Giving Tuesday is really about helping ourselves."
Yet, switching to the Christian worldview we understand our responsibility toward those in need. Broken lives genuinely stir compassion, to the point we want to do something. The reason? Every person is special, made in God’s image and worthy of respect. Giving Tuesday is a great day to celebrate our social responsibility, but it shouldn’t be one day for random acts of kindness. It ought to be just one example of a wholehearted lifestyle of purpose-driven sacrificial service.
That’s why a New York think-tank will never change the world. People lack moral authority: any instruction to “do this!” can be met with the response, “…but why should I listen to you?” People are limited to influencing externals: changing our habits on the outside will never change our heart on the inside.
"Only God can turn this world...the right way up."
That’s why only God can turn this world upside down, or more accurately, the right way up. Only he has the authority: God is above and beyond us, with the power and position to rule over us. Only he has access to the human heart: God changes us on the inside and that’s what makes a lasting difference on the outside.
Why give on Giving Tuesday?
Let Giving Tuesday be a celebration of a life of care and compassion toward others that’s not natural - it’s supernatural! Then use this day to invest in those who are shining and sharing this message across the country and around the world.
Author and speaker.