Retirement usually means having less income.

But once you have your head around a new budget – for everyday living and your bucket list – there are still good reasons to be generous.

It makes no difference whether the money we receive comes from a wage packet or a pension, it is still God’s gift to us. Indeed, James 1:17 reminds us that ‘Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.’

And the Bible consistently urges us to be generous with all that God has generously provided. As Jesus said, ‘it is far better for you to give than to receive’.

By giving away some of what we receive we live out our belief that we belong to God and everything we have is his. More than that, Christians who practise generosity find it liberates them and deepens their trust in God.

  • Needing to cut back?

    Of course, reality may mean it is a time to prune some of your long-standing direct debit commitments. If so, do it with thanks for what your past gifts have achieved rather than guilt over the future.

    There are also positive ways to make up for what you are no longer able to contribute. You could –

    • Replace what you are no longer giving through the provision of your will.
    • Donate your time – of which you now have much more – as a volunteer or to help raise funds.
  • Help with your giving

    If you would like to explore opportunities and ways to give, the website of Stewardship is full of advice and encouragement. You can find it here.

    Also helpful are Charities Aid Foundation, which offers many services to help you plan and carry out your giving to charity.

  • Giving to your church

    No doubt your church will have the first call on your God-centred giving. This is not only because we have a responsibility to contribute to its activities and needs. But also as part of its commitment to respond to social need among its wider community.

    However, if your circumstances mean you are less able to contribute, there are other ways to play your part through your time and a legacy.

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The word retirement is not even in the Bible. What is taught in scripture is transition. There is nothing that says you work most of your life and then get to be selfish for the next 20 years"

Rick Warren, PurposeDrivenLife