The Gift of Giving

By Charles Stanley


You may have many talents, but if you are a Christian there is one gift that defines your life. Once you are saved your entire personality is driven by one of the seven motivational gifts listed in Romans 12:6-8. You will be most joyful and productive when you operate in the strength of your spiritual gift.

If your gift is giving, your life may resemble that of Matthew, the disciple and author of the lengthiest gospel. Although Matthew was a tax collector, he came to understand godly giving and he wrote more than any other gospel writer about the wise use of money and resources.

Key Passage: Romans 12:6-8

Scriptural Principles:

1. Those with the gift of giving are able to identify resources. These believers have the ability to see resources that others would overlook. Therefore they can make the wisest use of their money in giving for the Lord's work. Where others will feel they have nothing to give, the giver will always find some way to free up resources for a godly gift.

2. Those with the gift of giving desire to feel a part of God's work. Givers give of themselves, and they feel a rewarding sense of involvement in ministry through their giving. They are not interested in giving in an impersonal way; they must give from the heart, and therefore they need the personal assurance that their decision to give is one that comes from God.

3. Those with the gift of giving desire to give high quality. Where others might economize in their giving, believers with this gift want to offer the best they can make available. They want their gift to have lasting value, so they are often very careful about their selections and purchases. They give generously and wholeheartedly, and they insist that their gifts should always reflect the highest values.

4. Those with the gift of giving hope the gift is an answer to prayer. This is a gift that is practiced carefully. Givers are motivated to find and fill needs, and they will give to do so without being asked. It is their deep pleasure to know that the Spirit of God has led them to minister through giving to fill a need.

5. Those with the gift of giving desire to give secretly. When was the last time you gave an anonymous gift? Those with the gift of giving are not concerned about receiving credit or gratitude. They want only to know that they have clearly heard God's voice, been obedient to Him, and given just the thing that best served His kingdom.

6. Those with the gift of giving prefer to give without pressured appeals. Actually, most of us don't like being pressured to give. Believers with the gift of giving wait upon God for giving decisions rather than responding to pressure from people. They realize that if God wants something done, He will impress our hearts with the burden to do it.

7. Those with the gift of giving are concerned that giving may corrupt. These believers know that money is neither good nor bad; it is a tool for godly use. Yet money can corrupt through the way it is used by people. Givers want to be certain that their gifts will be used in the way that most glorifies God, and never in a way that would dishonor Him.

8. Those with the gift of giving exercise personal thriftiness. Debt is a destructive force among God's children. Thriftiness is a discipline that allows us to create an abundance in our resources. Then we have a wonderful freedom to give generously to God's purposes. Believers with this gift are creatively economical with their resources in order to serve God better.

9. Those with the gift of giving give to motivate others to give. One of the most exciting results of our giving is our ability to positively influence others. Givers are thrilled when they find the opportunity to motivate other believers to share their joy. They frequently use their personal testimonies of giving, trusting God to use them for the encouragement of others.

10. Those with the gift of giving see financial needs that others overlook. Gifted givers can quickly recognize unused resources and make them available to serve God's purposes. They might sell personal items such as property or jewelry, for example, to create more finances for giving. They never make these decisions spontaneously, but seek confirmation through prayer and godly advice.

11. Those with the gift of giving confirm amounts with godly counsel. Believers with this gift are always generous but never impulsive. They respect the potential for God to use their resources, so they seek wise counsel for deciding upon the amount for a significant gift. They are particularly careful about their financial legacy to ensure that it provides for the continued work of God.

12. What are some misunderstandings of the gift of giving? Givers pay attention to finances, so they may be misjudged as materialistic. They make sure their gifts are used properly, so they may seem to be trying to control the work or the worker. As they encourage others to give, they may seem overbearing, though their own lack of response to pressure may seem like a lack of generosity. Givers are frugal, which could be misinterpreted as stinginess or insensitivity to their friends' desires.

13. What are the results of walking in the flesh for those with this gift? Godly givers are grateful people, but in the carnal life this trait becomes ingratitude. The punctual giver becomes known for tardiness, and tolerance becomes prejudice. Thriftiness gives way to extravagance, resourcefulness vanishes, and wastefulness takes it place. The contentment of giving becomes a covetous discontent. These believers are cautious when living in the Spirit, but rash when walking in the flesh.


Would you like for God to bless you financially, so that you can experience the many blessings of giving? The first principle to learn is that of discipline. In the coming week, I challenge you to ask God whether each potential purchase is wise or unwise. You will be surprised at the money you will save in one week as God guides your use of resources.

You will also be surprised by how much joy you feel as you find yourself giving more and more to purposes that have eternal value. God will multiply your resources. He will honor your giving heart. He will free you from the tyranny of financial debt. Trust Him in this, and you will discover that giving is among the greatest of gifts.