The Working Poor and Your Giving Life

The working poor are all around us.  They serve us each day and often for wages that get them by – but just barely.  How might a consciousness of them help us grow in our giving lives?

What Do You Do With Your $1’s and $5’s?

Ray Lyne was a unique man who spent his career teaching and modeling the giving life.  Because much of Ray’s work was before the turn of the century – when cash was more commonly used for daily transactions – he developed a philosophy about the use of $1 and $5 bills.

It was common to see Ray with a sizeable “wad of cash” much of which was $1 and $5 bills.  The bellman at the hotel, a server in a restaurant, a cabbie, maids who serviced his hotel room – and anyone else God prompted him to help – these were the recipients of all of Ray’s $1 and $5 bills.

“These are for the working poor” Ray would say.  “Never spend your $1’s and $5’s on yourself but use them to bless those who serve you.”

 For Ray, it was a joy and honor to share some of what God had entrusted to him.  He took our scripture literally, “Never walk away from someone who deserves your help…”

 Today, in our nearly cashless culture, this kind of giving requires that we be a bit more intentional.  One of Ray’s students adapted the philosophy and tries to keep a $50 or $100 bill in his wallet to assure he can help when the Lord brings him in contact with “someone who deserves your (His) help…”

 How do you assure you are ready to meet an immediate need or bless a person who serves you well?  I’d love to hear your strategy.  And, if you don’t have one – is it worth prayerfully pondering?

Perhaps your small gift, well timed to bless and encourage, may just be the answer to that worker’s prayer.  It is certainly a modern fulfillment of Proverbs 3:28 – “Don’t tell your neighbor ‘maybe another time’ or ‘try me tomorrow’ when the money’s right there in your pocket.”

May We Help You?

If you are looking for new ways to grow in your giving life, we have created an eBook, A Practical Guide to Giving Generously, which may help you explore additional opportunities. You can download your free copy using the link below.  There is no cost or obligation.

© 2022 CDF Capital Foundation from the Lifestyle Giving Legacy files