Since beginning our weekly allowance I’ve been trying to find a practical way for the girls to donate their give jar money. (Check out "Teaching My Kids How to Spend, Save, Give" to read about how we do allowance in our home.) I want the act of giving to be a consistent practice so I’ve been struggling as 10% of what they receive each week is so minimal and will take a long time to accumulate into a useful amount.
A couple weeks ago I had the privilege of sharing the evening with a beautiful woman Bettina who has spent decades travelling the world helping the poor and oppressed. She shared with me her vision for providing young people to give from what they have. It began with a five dollar bill. This is Bettina’s story:
I believe the Lord prepares our hearts long before He reveals His plans for us. As a director of an International feeding program for impoverished children for over a decade, I have seen first hand the difference a gift – even the smallest gift – can make.
High5Give5 began with a five dollar gift. A colleague’s (rather entrepreneurial) 7 year old son went out and sold some of his toys door to door. After making an impressive 17 dollars, he said he didn’t feel right about keeping all the money for himself. Without hesitation, he decided to give me 5 dollars (along with the sweetest hand-written note) to help feed the “poor kids.” I was so touched by his pure heart and simple faith – Like the young boy in the gospels who gave Jesus his three fish and five loaves of bread – a simple offering which Jesus multiplied and fed over five thousand people!
I started sharing this story with friends, and it wasn’t long before another child – this time a little girl – sent me another 5 dollars writing: “Take a chance on 5 and see how much more arrives”
With that simple challenge of faith, our mission came into clear focus. Soon, more people (from New York to Kosovo) were giving me more five dollars, because they too wanted to help the poor.
It is a common belief that this “selfie” generation has become so self absorbed that they are numb to human empathy and caring about the needs of others. But I believe that when given the chance and the right tools – young people can be a powerful force for Christ’s selfless love and healing.
The world’s problems are complex, and the needs of the morbidly poor are endless. But at High5Give5, we take to heart the Lord’s words: “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin…” (Zech 4:10a)
Join us in our mission to help those in need; and to raise up a new generation of young people who are ready, willing, and able to extend a hand – a “High 5” to love!
As Bettina shared with me her vision it became clear that this is how my girls can give the money from their give jar. Every time they get to $5.00, I will walk them through the steps to give $5 at High5Give5, then I will remove the money from their give jar and put it back in the family “bank”. I love that I can take them to the High5Give5 website and they can see how their money is helping children and families all over the world through Bettina's blog updates. I hope to build into them a joy for giving and as they grow and make more money that they always make giving a priority.