How to give extravagantly, when everyone is asking.

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There are days when I’m overwhelmed with financial requests. From Facebook, Twitter, news networks, snail mail, email, radio, or word-of-mouth, not one single day passes when I don’t hear of some amazing organization that needs money.

By organization, I also mean church and my six friends at any given time who are fundraising for a great cause. Sometimes I’m that friend who is humbly asking for funds. On this blog alone, there are at least ten social justice organizations worth supporting.

I never have enough money or time to give to everyone that asks, unless I give only $1 or sometimes 50 cents. While I’m sure that if every person in the world gave just one dollar to your cause, you’d be able to save the world from its terrible misfortunes, I do not want to give one dollar to everyone that asks.

Call me stingy, call me un-Christ- like, call me whatever you want, name-calling is fine with me as long as you aren’t being hypocritical.

So what can I do? What can YOU do when you’re being shouted at from all sides with requests?

Narrow it down.

Here’s how:

Choose what topics, what issues, are most important to YOU. Not to your mom, not to your neighbor (those people are important to you so please support them and love them by supporting what they love, but know that you have my permission not to give your life savings to save the pandas just because your mom once saw a panda cough in the zoo), but figure out what is that thing that makes YOUR heart ache the most.

Do you have a heart that all children should have a father figure in their life because you grew up without a dad?

Do you want to take down companies that are controlling our food growth because you don’t want to eat chemically grown food?

Do you want to find a cure for cancer because your grandfather died from cancer?

Do you want to sponsor children so that they can eat fruits and vegetables because you believe that all children have the right to be nourished?

Do you want to protest corrupt government because you have seen its effects?

What issue screams at you, hits your buttons, makes your blood boil, makes you cry, or gives you such great joy that you can’t imagine saying no?

Go, and do that thing. Go, and give extravagantly to that thing. Leave the other great causes for the people who hear those issues shouting at them from the rooftops.

You can’t do everything, but it would be a great shame if you did nothing because you didn’t know which thing to do.

Justice , ,

6 comments


  1. Great post, Kyla. Giving is impractical and counterintuitive, but there is an intentional way to approach it. Thanks for offering some tips to helping us along.

    • kylajoyful

      Yes, giving is counter-intuitive, which means that we have the choice to give purposefully and out of love, instead of obligation. Thanks for commenting, Jeff. And thanks for being willing to help me out yesterday.

  2. Excellent post–humorous and helpful. My husband is a professional photographer and is constantly receiving requests for gratis work. He has been so generous with his time and talent that we were beginning to see that people were taking advantage. He has decided to choose a few charities and shoot for them, and is learning to say "no" to everyone else. We need money to pay the bills too!

    • kylajoyful

      Experience is a great way to learn! Those charities will greatly benefit from his photography assistance. I think in the end, everyone will be better served because he could say yes to bigger things instead of saying yes to all things.

  3. In this case, being a laser is more effective than being a flashlight. Spreading our attention, money, and time like a flashlight to so many causes can wear us out and be ineffective. Focusing like a laser on that which we are most passionate about would be much more beneficial to the people we are helping and ourselves.

    Great guide on how to get us to do that "thing" and not wear ourselves thin or like you said, spankin' do nothing.

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