The Heart in Giving
A donation represents a portion of a person’s life. This is the reason why charitable giving must be voluntary and from the heart. Only a voluntary act can give something invaluable, and only the heart can experience the benefit of such a gift. Our minds have difficulty understanding the value of life. We attempt to calculate a value based on earning power and total asset values. These are necessary measurements from a legal standpoint but they make no sense at all to the heart. The heart understands that a life lost can never be repaid. There is no value to be put on someone’s existence.
Now take that same understanding and apply it to a charitable gift. The heart understands all that went into the giving: the compassion that drove the need to give, the sacrifice made in the donation, the impact of one life being used to touch the life of another person or people. These are all matters of the heart. The mind cannot completely grasp them, but the heart understands them fully.
A thing given due to extortion is not a charitable act. It is not a matter of the heart. Whether extorted through force of will or guilt or even religion, the donation is only a response to external influence. It is an appeasement of the extortion rather than a willing act of the heart. No value can be achieved. The life is taken out of it and supplanted by bitterness and regret.
But an act of charity, a donation or Mite as we like to call it, made from the heart, willingly and freely, carries with it the life of the donor made available to the recipient. It is a sacrifice made by one person for the benefit of another, and in that sacrifice is power to impact those in need. That same power also has the ability to change the one who sacrificed, because, as we know, charity is always a two-way street.