One of the resources the Foundation offers Tennessee Baptists is “6 Reasons Estate Planning Conversations Should Start in the Church.” It deals with the important topic of what church members should bet considering as they plan for what they want to leave behind after they are one day called home. First among these is the Biblical command to “Bless the Next Generation.”
Throughout the Bible, God instructs the current generation to bless the next generation. Undoubtedly, the greatest blessings we can leave our children and grandchildren is a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and sharing with them how they can have a relationship with Him that will give them eternal life. But we can also bless them by providing resources as well.
Proverbs 13:22 says: “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children.”
This verse should be at the forefront of our thinking as we choose how we use the resources God has given us in our everyday life. As we look to bless our descendants, we must consider what we want today alongside what we want for our future. Often, our desire for instant gratification pales in comparison to the legacy we want to leave for family and the Gospel.
Another verse about blessing the next generation is found in Psalm 78:4. It says:
“We will not hide them from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, His power, and the wonders He has done.”
What we do with our time and resources while we are on this earth can positively impact future generations and expand the impact of the Kingdom of God to those that will come after us. Making a charitable gift from our estate is a way to pass on the blessings we have received to carry on the work of sharing the Gospel of Christ. It is also a significant sign to our families of our faith and the value we place on the work of the church.
A recent Lifeway Research study found that nearly 84 percent of Southern Baptist Churches did not receive an estate gift in the year preceding the poll. I have talked with many pastors and church administrators and have found this statistic to be true. Many in our congregations are passing from this life, but when they leave this earth the church is being left out of their estate. Think of the impact on sharing the gospel if even half of church members would leave just 10% of their estate to their church or other Baptist cause to carry on the work of the Gospel!
What about you? Do you have a desire to “bless the next generation?” Have you thought about leaving part of your estate to your church for future ministry? We stand ready to help you put your faith into action and help you design an estate plan that can benefit your family and impact the Kingdom of God. Give us a call and let us help you get started.
Today’s plans. Tomorrow’s impact! That is what the Tennessee Baptist Foundation is all about. Be a blessing to the next generation.
Please note that the advice offered in this article is not intended to be construed as tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice for the reader. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.