Whatever forms our sacrifices take, it's worth examining our motives for giving.


There are so many great messages in these chapters of Corinthians that I'm sure there is a message for everyone! If you're a subscriber to my weekly email, you'll know my story about finding strength in our weaknesses, and that is the message that was meant for me this week. 

He Will Make Our Weaknesses Strong
There is a video that goes with that theme rather well that I thoroughly enjoyed, so I am going to post it first. It's a video from Women's Conference in April, and it's about 45 minutes long. If you have the time, I hope you'll watch and enjoy!

Weakness is a Feature, Not a Defect
I also loved this video by John Hilton III about how our weaknesses are not defects! I think this is an interesting way to view our weaknesses that I hadn't thought of before.


God Loveth a Cheerful Giver
I love this quote by Joseph Smith:
“A man filled with the love of God, is not content with blessing his family alone, but ranges through the whole world, anxious to bless the whole human race”

There were several great talks on the subject of charity that I enjoyed. Below are some of the quotes I liked from these talks, and as always, the link to the full talk will be below the quotes:

Bless the Poor and Needy
John K. Karmack said the following:

By using the words rich and poor to describe Christ’s great gift, Paul helped them understand their loving duty to help the poor. In this way, he explained, they could prove their sincerity. Paul continued: “Now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality” (2 Corinthians 8:14).
Simply put, others now need your help. And you may at another time need their help. Helping each other leads to equality. These words triggered another thought. As Paul said, both the abundant giver and the needy recipient had their needs supplied in the process of giving. Those with abundance gave food, clothing, shelter, and money to those in need. On the other hand, those in poverty shared their love, appreciation, humility, and simplicity. This process of sharing with each other promoted greater justice and equality. And the process brought them closer to the spirit of the great plan of reconciliation.
We can have the same blessings today. Sharing blesses both the giver and the receiver, and both feel good when it happens. The Lord is also pleased. Everyone wins!

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When the Lord repeats the same warning in direct statements and powerful parables, we are wise if we pay attention. It is obvious that we must help those needy souls that cross our paths, if we have the ability to do so. My experience is that most Church members with abundance would like to find a way to share with those in poverty but are looking for the best ways to do it. They have discovered that giving in the wrong way often causes more problems than it solves. Our giving can be wasted, even when given with the best of intentions. And handouts often weaken more than they strengthen. Also, so much that we do provides only temporary help and fails to solve problems on a basic level. We want to help in the worst way and often do! Is there anything we can do that will have a lasting effect in helping the poor and needy?
This is where we turn to the issue of the responsibility owed to the poor and needy by the Church as an institution.


You can find the full talk here: Bless the Poor and Needy by John K. Karmack 

Are We Not All Beggars?
Jeffrey R. Holland said:

So how might we “do what we can”?
For one thing, we can, as King Benjamin taught, cease withholding our means because we see the poor as having brought their misery upon themselves. Perhaps some have created their own difficulties, but don’t the rest of us do exactly the same thing? Isn’t that why this compassionate ruler asks, “Are we not all beggars?” Don’t we all cry out for help and hope and answers to prayers? Don’t we all beg for forgiveness for mistakes we have made and troubles we have caused? Don’t we all implore that grace will compensate for our weaknesses, that mercy will triumph over justice at least in our case?
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We are always expected to help ourselves before we seek help from others. Furthermore, I don’t know exactly how each of you should fulfill your obligation to those who do not or cannot always help themselves. But I know that God knows, and He will help you and guide you in compassionate acts of discipleship if you are conscientiously wanting and praying and looking for ways to keep a commandment He has given us again and again. 
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I do not know all the reasons why the circumstances of birth, health, education, and economic opportunities vary so widely here in mortality, but when I see the want among so many, I do know that “there but for the grace of God go I.” I also know that although I may not be my brother’s keeper, I am my brother’s brother, and “because I have been given much, I too must give.” 


You can find Elder Holland's full talk here: Are We Not All Beggars?

For This Cause Came I Into the World
This talk by Alexander B. Morrison is excellent and he speaks about a variety of topics concerning the Savior's mission. I found this as part of my research for another project, but this quote really stood out to me with regards to this lesson and our willingness to give:

Jesus, the Master Teacher, repeatedly taught eternal truths drawn from common experiences of life. One such lesson deals with the need to be generous in our giving—to give with the spirit of sacrifice and devout intent to bless those less fortunate than ourselves. Luke records that as Jesus sat in the temple He observed those who cast their contributions into the treasure chests therein. Some deposited their gifts with devoutness and sincerity of purpose, but others, though they gave great sums of silver and gold, did so ostentatiously, primarily to be seen of men.
Among the long lines of contributors was a poor widow, who cast into the treasure chest all that she had, two small bronze coins, known as mites. Taken together they amounted to less than half a cent in American money. Noting the disparity between what she gave and the much greater contributions of some others, Jesus proclaimed, “Of a truth … , this poor widow hath cast in more than they all.” Though the rich had given from their abundance, “she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had” (Luke 21:1–4). Jesus knew it is not the amount we give that matters. In the arithmetic of heaven, value is determined not by quantity but by quality. It is the intent of the willing heart and mind that is acceptable to God (see 2 Cor. 8:12).


You can find the full talk here if you'd like to read more:  For This Cause Came I Into the World by Alexander B. Morrison