Yesterday I talked about charitable giving. Today I wanted to follow up by challenging us as Christians to consider giving even more than we do. Perhaps the best book on that subject was written by David Green. It has the arresting title, Giving It All Away. He is the founder of Hobby Lobby and tells the story of his success and calls for Christians to give generously to churches and other ministries. He and the rest of his family have been on my radio program. We often talk about Hobby Lobby, the Museum of the Bible, and even their court case that went all the way to the Supreme Court.
Most people know that Hobby Lobby is closed on Sunday. They may not realize that their stores close earlier (8 PM) than other stores. That means that they are only open 66 hours a week and compete with stores open many more hours. David Green did this so that his employees can spend more time with their families.
Hobby Lobby also pays its full-time employees well. Back in 2009, they raised the base pay to $10/hour. The next year they tacked on another dollar. The next year they did it again and then again. This is another way that the Green family values their employees.
I asked David Green if he ever imagined that he would have to sue the federal government. The thought never crossed his mind, but they did so when the HHS mandate would have required them to provide abortifacients for their employees.
Much of his book focuses on giving and challenges Christians to engage in the adventure of tithing. He has three principles he uses and encourages all of us to implement them as well. First, set your criteria. What are you going to fund? What are your priorities? Second, set your giving amount. Give the first fruits, not what is left over. And finally, set fire for the future. He also has thought quite a bit about how to make generosity generational.
His book is certain to spark your interest and encourage you in giving.