My husband and I have been blessed financially during the almost-27 years we’ve been married. We’ve always been respectful of money, lived below our means and saved like maniacs. As we look forward to our children leaving the nest to go to college, we are proud that we’ve saved for their educations and for our retirement.
One aspect of our finances that I believe is important is generosity. What does generosity look like for our family? Well, it is paying people who work for us an above-market wage, tipping generously and giving money to charities and non-profit organizations. I have run my business on these principles, and I believe that any generosity that I have shown has been returned to me many times over. In other words, I think that one reason why both my family and my business have been blessed financially is because we give generously and out of a sense of the abundance of the universe.
Money is a representation of energy. When energy is dammed up and not allowed to flow, it disintegrates, like a battery that sits on the shelf and is never used. Love, another form of energy, multiplies when you give it away. Energy is enhanced by allowing it to flow. When we bless others by giving money to worthy causes, whether that be a generous tip to the hair dresser, a check to a family member who is in financial distress or a donation to a non-profit organization, we set up a flow of energy that I believe ultimately comes back to bless us.
I do not believe that we set up a flow of blessed energy when we spend money on ourselves. Although there is nothing wrong with having nice things (I believe that the Divine wants us to enjoy abundance in every way), buying a new car does not set up the chain of blessing that giving away money does. Buying a new car has a different feel and purpose to it – you don’t get the same satisfaction you get when giving to a cause that is bigger than yourself.
When I get concerned about money, I counter the anxiety by donating some money. For example, I am on a quasi-sabbatical through the end of this month, and cash flow has been a bit worrisome for my conservative fiscal nature. My local public radio station did a pledge drive last week, and I decided to give generously even though I am not bringing in much income right now. And, my husband and I hosted a reception and brunch for our extended family during a recent family reunion because we knew it was the right thing to do. These acts of giving were done on faith that these blessings would be returned to us. My husband simply says, “It’s the right thing to do.”
I’ve been thinking about this blog entry for the past two days, wondering if I had the guts to publish it. Well, now I do and here’s why: In today’s mail, there were two unexpected checks from different sources that equaled the amounts that we had recently spent on family and charities. We started the blessing, and it was returned to us. I feel so blessed.
Our US congress and president are currently considering sending each citizen a tax rebate next summer. What would happen if a large number of us would send our rebate check to a charity? Not only would it stimulate the economy, but it would stimulate a flow of blessings right back to us. I think that’s what my family will do.
Oh Holy and Abundant One, source of all our blessings, help us develop generous hearts and hands to do Your work in this world. Amen.