Opinion: Donating Your Stimulus Check
By David Neidert
His tweet caught my attention. “If you are financially secure at this moment in your life, might you consider donating your stimulus check during the COVID-19 pandemic?” This Christian millennial asks a significant question, one I have pondered for a few weeks.
It’s not just this young man’s question that spurs my thinking, but also an article in Forbes magazine. Sarah Hansen, in writing “12 Ways to Donate Your $1,200 Stimulus Check to Help Fight the Coronavirus,” offers some suggestions, as well. What is arresting is that both a believer and a secular magazine are asking the same question.
As you might imagine, these voices are not popular. Most replies to their idea are filled with anger, finger-pointing, saying it’s not enough money to begin with, self-focus, and emojis deploring the notion. The idea, however, should at least be considered from our faith perspective.
Hundreds of thousands will surely need this stimulus check immediately. Families and individuals are hurting. They are in desperate situations needing this critical support. There is no attempt to downplay this at all. This money is a blessing that will help people survive.
I wonder, however, about another hundred thousand who might be secure financially at this moment. What might they do with the check? Each family has to make that decision alone. It may be security for more coming needs. There is no blanket statement about it or reason for using this money for one’s particular circumstance.
Some criticize that millionaires should be giving up their money at this moment, not those getting a stimulus check. We know, however, from decades of giving research that most organizations are funded by those in the middle. These are average people giving $25 here and there to things they love or believe are right in aiding humanity.
I want to forward this giving idea that captured my eye. Decades ago, my wife and I awakened and became committed to the stewardship of our resources. This call upon our lives was deepened after I helped write a workbook on “Faith and Finances” for the Anderson University School of Theology and Christian Ministry. During that writing, I was surrounded by believers from sixty-seven graduate seminaries across the United States who were also exploring the call to stewardship in our lives. The work took me into a richer understanding of scripture regarding the use of our financial gifts for God’s glory. Ultimately, we’ve concluded, it all belongs to God, no matter where it comes from. As believers, it’s our task to use the supplied means for kingdom work.
Giving the entire check might not be viable for you or your family. It might be that a simple tithe or a few dollars are doable. A song from my childhood comes often to mind in moments like this, “Little is much, when God is in it.” God is the multiplier, if we are the obedient instrument.
My wife and I have had this conversation. We are blessed at this juncture in life. The stimulus check feels like a blessing compounded that we can share with others. Might you join us, in prayerfully considering your situation?
We’ve just celebrated Easter! Life new in Jesus is upon us! What a grand story might be written about God’s people as we follow his way in using our resources for the suffering and afflicted among us.
If you’re feeling called to give of your resources, we have two options available for you to support churches affected by COVID-19:
Views expressed in the preceding op-ed do not necessarily reflect those of Church of God Ministries, Inc., or its affiliates. Op-ed features are published to provoke thought, stimulate healthy discussion, and inspire us to be with Jesus, become like Jesus, and do what Jesus did.
David Neidert, who serves as a contributing writer and editor for Church of God Ministries. Born and raised in the Church of God, David Neidert worked at Anderson University for thirty-eight years and served the Historical Society of the Church of God as editor for one year. His published works include curriculum, numerous articles, and two books.
Learn more about the response of Church of God Ministries to the coronavirus (COVID-19), including resources for you and your church, at www.jesusisthesubject.org/theway.