To me this is about balance and “all things in moderation”. It is also about knowing what you need. Lori and I do not lack for material things in the least – we don’t need or want much at this point in our lives. In part this is because we are thinking more and more towards minimalism (or here, or here) – not full on, but leaning that way because we see the wisdom of simplicity and of putting our time and money more into people than things.
This in no way means we are opposed to things. We recently bought a violin (albeit a Craig’s List deal purchased with money from selling something else). We especially like giving things to others (we’ve been known to anonymously pay for a meal for strangers at a restaurant or give a couple gift certificates for a night out).
My thoughts on gifts in a nut shell:
- Think them through.
- Give only what is needed or will be appreciated.
- Do your best to save money when you buy (so you can give to more people!).
- Sometimes give anonymously – especially if you give to someone who can’t give in return.
- Be a good receiver – show gratitude and appreciation as if it’s the perfect gift.
- Do NOT go into debt to give!
In short – give, but do it with thought and prayer.