For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 1 Timothy 6:7 (KJV)
Did you ever see a Brinks truck following a hearse to the cemetery?
Or to put it another way, what does that say about the way you’ve invested your time and your money? If all you did was worry about making more and more and more, you’ve missed some of the most gratifying aspects of life because there are many ways you can use your resources to provide for your own needs, as well as to make a difference in the world. That is called Socially Responsible Investing, a Financial Management specialty which has grown in popularity in the last few years.
Microloans are a prime example of how you can make a little money go a long way toward helping others and at the same time grow your own investment portfolio. Sometimes that will be at a lower rate than you would make with more traditional investments, but not always. The microloans themselves go to individuals who would never qualify for a traditional bank loan, folks for whom a small loan to establish a very small business can make a difference between adequately feeding their families, or not.
You can also invest in people both by volunteering your time and by making donations to any of the hundreds of small 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations that provide financial help for medical care, for scholarships for needy, qualified students to attend trade schools or academic colleges, or for stretching the resources of the elderly whose only income is social security. The list of ways you can make a difference in the world by helping others goes on and on and on. Statistics show that volunteering also does great things for the volunteers themselves.
Sometimes a simple idea can result in greater results than you ever dreamed possible. The NBC evening news on Friday, June 22, 2018 ended with coverage of the internet fund started by Charlotte and Dave Willner that rapidly became the largest single fund-raiser in Facebook’s history. Like millions of their fellow Americans and as parents of a 2-year old themselves, they were appalled by the Trump immigration policy of separating children from their parents and wanted to help those children be reunited with their families. Their goal was to raise $1,500 for RAICES, the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, a nonprofit that provides low-cost legal defense services to immigrant and refugee families in Texas. So they set up a donation website and as of the 22nd, the fund had raised 19 Million dollars for that purpose!
While none of us can take the $25 or $50 or $100 donations made to that and other nonprofits to our graves, we can rest assured that we have put our funds to good use. And the satisfaction that brings about is sometimes beyond belief. We Americans are caring people and our actions prove that to ourselves whether they do to anyone else or not.
So here’s the story. While a Brinks truck isn’t going to accompany any of us to the cemetery, the way we’ve invested our time and money and efforts to improve the lives of others will live on long after we do.
What will your obituary say about the way you’ve invested your time and your money to make a difference in the world?
Blessings on your efforts to do so wherever God calls you to serve.