It’s just five years old, this Giving Tuesday thing. According the the fount of all things true on the internet, Wikipedia says that the concept and social momentum behind Giving Tuesday was created by Mashable, a technology website in 2012. On the other hand, the GT website says it was created by the team at the Belfer Center for Innovation & Social Impact at the 92nd Street Y. We’ll let them sort that out..

The November rush toward commercialism almost obliterates Thanksgiving in its wake. Shoppers line up and wage battle for Black Friday, and trackpads and mice get clicked to death on Cyber Monday. Perhaps it was cultural guilt for our unashamed and excessive embrace of hyper materialism? Whatever the prompting, I am grateful that our culture has begun to make #GivingTuesday a “thing.”

A quick peek at the graphic at Wiki shows the giving momentum behind this social initiative:

What culture is just recently embracing, the Spirit behind Christmas has always said:

“It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

One thing I believe #GivingTuesday gets wrong is the placement following the mad rush to spend. I’d love to see the day moved to the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. That would prioritize our giving and challenge us to plan accordingly rather than allowing #GivingTuesday to be a recipient of our financial leftovers.

What will you give to today?

Here’s my plan:

  1. I’m giving to the International Mission Board’s Jesus Storybook Bible Translation Project. The goal is to raise $20,000 to provide a translation of this excellent children’s Bible in the Basque language. This unreached people group in Spain is one that our church has embraced. I’d encourage you to at least give to it what you might spend on a latte. [Give here]
  2. Northstar Church’s Immeasurably More campaign. I love this faith family, and I am excited about their first ministry center! Consider giving what you’d spend on internet over the course of a month (or year!). [Give here]
  3. University of Arkansas at Monticello Baptist Collegiate Ministry is also on my giving radar. I served as the BCM Director there for eight years, and a former student is now the director. I love how God continues to make disciples through this excellent ministry. I’d encourage you to consider supporting them with at least what you’d pay for a month of Netflix. [Give here]
  4. Virginia Tech Baptist Collegiate Ministry. Last year I wrote about giving to campus ministries, and as you can tell, I feel strongly about supporting them and hope you do too. They are strategically instrumental in reaching young adults for Jesus and training leaders for our churches. [Give here]
  5. Virginia Tech Cru. [Give here]

What’s your plan? Leave a comment!

If you are giving today, leave the name of the church, charity, or organization that you will be giving to in the comments. And share about #GivingTuesday on your social media accounts or blog. It helps spread the word. Mashable has a great list of 5 reasons why you should participate in #GivingTuesday, but I honestly think they are rather anemic.

Why do YOU think it’s important to give?

On this day...