Elephant Ears plant in a glass vase with waterGod wants us to live full lives and empower others to do the same. Future architect Frank Lloyd Wright learned this lesson the winter he was nine. After walking together across a snow-covered field, Frank’s reserved, no-nonsense uncle pointed out their tracks in the snow. His uncle’s were straight, and Frank’s meandered all over. “Notice how your tracks wander aimlessly from the fence to the cattle to the woods and back again,” his uncle remarked. “And see how my tracks aim directly to my goal? There is an important lesson in that.” Years later, the world-famous architect liked to tell how the experience had greatly contributed to his philosophy in life. “I determined right then,” he’d say with a twinkle in his eye, “not to miss most things in life, as my uncle had.” (Source: Focus on the Family)

Making sure “not to miss” what God has for us in each stage of life involves some creativity and obedience. For instance, could you discover a new skill and create a fresh way to give of your time and talents? Have you considered how giving retirement money could change lives for the cause of Christ? In his book, When the Game Is Over, It All Goes Back in the Box, John Ortberg spells out five secrets to a full life.

Being rich towards God means…

  1. Growing a soul that is increasingly healthy and good.
  2. Loving and enjoying the people around you.
  3. Learning about your gifts and passion, and doing good work to improve the world.
  4. Becoming generous with your stuff.
  5. Making that which is temporary become the servant of that which is eternal…”

Many people have found that donating their retirement assets such as IRAs or 401(k) plans to ministries they appreciate like Bible League International not only makes something eternal of something temporary, it’s also good stewardship. Did you know that a very significant portion of your retirement savings could be forfeited in taxes upon your death?

By using other assets to benefit your children, and designating a ministry such as Bible League International as the beneficiary of your retirement assets, you can avoid this, freeing up those funds to extend impact at minimal cost to your family. It’s a fantastic way to know the essence of your life will continue long after you’re gone, creating a legacy that is very “rich toward God.” Psalm 90:12 shows us a simple phrase we can pray for God’s help to live well, “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.”

Consider how giving a retirement gift will enrich your life now.  And just think of all God will do with it!