What have we been given by God? Wow! What a deep question. A free will, the choice to accept or reject God and all He has given us, the right to life from conception to death, eternal life… and the list goes on.
I always thought the above scripture was solely about money, but it is about ALL God has given you. Are you using your talents, your mind, your voice, your money, your energy, and your home for the glory of God? It is when you say, “Here I am Lord, use me to your service” (and mean it!) then God will lead you in service to Him.
To have a relationship with God and understand His tremendous love for us can’t just be a truth in our head. It has to be fully understood and accepted in our heart. How does that happen? Life is a journey and we grow in faith if we keep an open heart. Being able to quote what you believe and living your faith are two different things. And sometimes God has to bring you to the foot of the cross to make this transition happen.
For me, while at a former position many years ago, I stood up for my beliefs. And I lost a lot for doing so – my job, my home, my stability and self-confidence. So how could God let this happen? Well, God had a plan for me. I had to lose the material things to truly embrace those beliefs fully into my heart. I stood up for what I believe was right in God’s eyes and he gifted me with a strength and love for him that I never imagined was possible.
Challenges in my life continue, tragedy occurs, the rain comes and then the sun comes out. God is always with me. Through the sadness, I know He is holding me. Through the joy, He is holding me. Thanks be to God.
We should use what He has given us not only in our life on earth, but also to make a difference in the future when we are gone. When the end of our life comes, once again we will be alone with Jesus. What will we tell Him we have done with all He gave us? We all know we can’t take anything material with us. How do we prepare?
There are 4 things you must do now to prepare what God has given you, for the future:
- Prepare and execute your will. Remember not only your family, but also the ministries to which God has led you.
- Have a power of attorney. (Note: Husbands and wives, don’t make each other your power of attorney without having a second person listed.)
- Have advanced directives and give to doctors, your loved ones and the hospital.
- For the sake of your loved ones, plan your funeral and burial now and give a copy to your adult children or to a loved one. When the people you have left behind are grieving, it is not the time for them to have to deal with these kinds of decisions.
Diane Duquette has 30 years experience in financial services and planned giving. As the previous Director of Planned Giving at the Catholic Foundation of North Georgia, she has spoken widely and done dozens of end of life planning seminars. We are blessed to have her as our Director of Development at PAC.
God has given a lot to Diane. She has 3 children, 3 grand-children, and 2 beautiful great-grandchildren. She has a wonderful talent for gardening and painting, and a love for art in all forms.