What’s in it for me?

My department at work just finished our United Way fundraiser. We put on a spaghetti lunch for the staff. Spaghetti, three types of sauce, meatballs, salad, bread, a homemade cupcake and a beverage. We provided this at $6.00 a meal. 

There were many other departments doing similar things throughout our fundraising season. They would provide meals or raffle off a goodie basket or IPOD. It got me thinking about the state of charitable giving. Have we reduced our giving to a “what’s in it for me” mentality. Angela and I support St. Judes, not just because it’s a great cause but because we get useful return address labels too. Do many of us give to such and such charity with the idea that we are getting something out of it other than a warm fuzzy feeling and the knowledge we did the right thing? Is giving for the sake of giving a lost art?

I don’t believe this is always the case, in fact there are some who have encouraged me by their willingness to give with no promise of receiving anything in return. Jared White gave a sizable gift when we set out to start LifePoint. Gary & Suzanne Wild gave regular offerings when LifePoint was going through an extremely difficult time financially. Without their generosity we might not have even made it through our first year. And my close friends, Zack & Hollie, support LifePoint eventhough they are unable to to attend. All of these people have been a huge encouragement to me on my own journey. They compel me to think bigger and hurt deeper.

The question must not be, what’s in it for me but what’s in me for others.