Like a lot of newlyweds, Ron and I could barely rub two nickels together when we got married. We tied the knot on a hot August day in Texas at eleven o’clock in the morning. We enjoyed a brief honeymoon and then returned to Dallas where Ron started his last semester in graduate school as a full-time seminary student. I provided the only income for our family at that time. It was enough for us to move into a cozy, one-bedroom apartment. Ron also began looking for his first church to serve as lead pastor, a search that lasted nearly a year. We prayed and waited.
Eventually, we moved south to Houston where Ron assumed the leadership of a hurting church. The ministry required much faith and promised no financial security. Seven years later when God called us to another ministry, we had stories to tell of God’s faithful provision as He grew His church.
One of the ways our heavenly Father provided for our family was through the generosity of my earthly father, who made sure we enjoyed an annual vacation. Family meant everything to my parents, and they made it possible for my two brothers, our families, and me to gather at the beach every year. Our parents would rent the beach house large enough for fifteen of us. All we had to do was get ourselves there. Ron and I could afford the two tanks of gas it would take to drive from Houston to Gulf Shores, Alabama. As part of the deal, we kids also helped cook the meals.
Generosity is one of the great legacies my father left before he went home to be with the Lord. The annual Dibble family beach vacation was not the only way my father expressed his generosity, but it was one way that left a huge impact on us.
So, what are you teaching your children and grandchildren about money? How are you inspiring them to live generous lives, full of faith and good works? Will you leave them a legacy of debt, materialism, and selfish financial decisions? Or, will you leave behind the fingerprints of faithful financial stewardship as taught in the pages of Scripture?”
Ron often quotes John 3:16 and then says, “God is the most generous Being in the universe. He loves us so much that He gave His one and only Son.” Our heavenly Father’s example should inspire us to live generously, too.
This blog is an excert from an eBook by Dr. Ron and Cathryn Jones called It's Apparent: Plain Talk About Raising Kids Who Love God.