Many people consider themselves generous and take offence when they are called ‘Ijebu’, ‘Aka-gum’, ‘Stingy’, ‘Scrooge’, ‘Tightfisted’ or ‘Pefty’ or the host of other names reserved for the selfish.
They actually do give, but usually to family and some certain other people and sometimes the giving is a sacrifice. Thus they feel majorly misunderstood when they are the butt of Baba-ijebu jokes.
Why is there a breech in communication? Why aren’t their actions enough to earn them a place alongside the great patron Saint Nicholas? Why do they still squirm on their seats when the pastor gives a moving sermon about giving? Why are their mantras ‘Na condition make crayfish bend’ and ‘The economy is bad’.
Is giving based on circumstances or just a state of mind? Would a tight-fisted person give more if he had more? Read on and see me try to shed some light on the types of giving and why a stingy man is still a giver in his own right.
There are two words I’d like to tackle: Generosity and Responsibility.
There’s a difference between the two as regards giving but most people fail to notice.
Majority of people are responsible. They man up to their duties and help those who depend on them like family both nuclear and extended but that’s not termed generousity cos most of d time they don’t have a choice.
If they refuse to meet the needs of those that depend on them, they come off as being negligent or hard hearted or just bad people and are many times deep down unhappy about parting with their money maybe because they also have unmet needs. That is taking responsibility and being responsible for those that depend on you.
Generosity on the other hand is a choice. Biblically you know a generous person by how much he gives to God and to those around him who ask of him but whom it is not mandatory to give to.
For instance your gateman, a beggar, certain groups of friends or acquaintances. These are some categories of people that you don’t have to help cos they could actually get help elsewhere and not giving would not make you look bad cos you don’t owe them anything.
Giving this category would be more out of generosity than responsibility.
As regards relationships, many people get the whole giving thing twisted. Some expect too much and hence demand too much, others expect something in return for every service rendered, i.e cash for kind and vice versa and others expect you to understand!
Giving to a girlfriend and wife are different entities because while giving to one is usually out of generosity the other is out of responsibility.
Where a wife is concerned her every need is a responsibility however frivolous it may be as long as it is in your power to give because you made a vow to do so. Just like when you give your bro money for a party. It isn’t viewed as generosity, it is your responsibility even though his needs at the time are frivolous. That’s d same for a wife. The mentality behind this sort of giving is that though it isn’t a pressing need, meeting it will make that person happy and one way or the other you are responsible for that person’s happiness. Some men meet only their wives’ pressing needs and forget all the little gestures that make a woman happy. If she aint happy, you aint happy and it shows you aint keeping your end of the vows cum bargain!
Guys, where all other chicks you happen to be runzing are concerned, they actually have the power to define your generosity because the truth is they cannot demand for your help or money because it is not their right and at every point in time you can choose to say No!
However, with the new Gold-digger vs Maga phenomenon, most guys have been tipped to the other extreme, refusing to give unless they are certain of getting something back in return, usually in kind, lest they be branded as magas. 😉
With a girlfriend, generousity is the name of the game as responsibilty does not often come into play here unless the woman is an orphan or financially challenged cos she doesn’t require you to be responsible for her.
She has parents and a monthly salary or allowance that can cover her basic needs so your giving becomes a show of generosity because everything you give her is a choice you’ve made to go out of your way to make her squeal in delight and you must realise that most of the stuff you’ll do for her will not be in response to pressing needs and may even be described as frivolous. e.g BIS subscriptions, take-outs, shopping, paying for her brazilian hair or designer clothes etc.
But encouraging her frivolity is something you find yourself doing usually because someone else, not you is handling her pressing needs usually a member of her family or her own pocket and you know it’s all cupid’s fault that you’d slave away and hand her your hard-earned cash just to see her eyes light up. Society has made women equate a man’s love based on three things: Actions, words and time spent together. Actions have always majorly constituted the giving of gifts and the making of sacrifices for the sake of a worthy love!
And be rest assured that though many women have exploited this, every GOOD girlfriend is generous too and would not take advantage of your generosity, hence it is o.k to let your guards down and open your wallet. If this makes you feel victimized or taken advantage of then you are probably on the wrong ship! Bring the matter to the table or jump off before you sink.
Most women especially at the relationship level also try to provide for the less pressing and frivolous needs of their men. Especially those which he is unwilling to attend to. For example, getting him new T-shirts, perfumes, wristwatches, pyjamas, facecaps, boxers, singlets, wallets
etc. The average man, not the metrosexual seems generally unaware about when his wardrobe needs an overhaul. Women however were made to notice such things and correct as much as is in their power to.
Some may choose to wait till birthdays and special ocassions but every good woman knows that giving is never one-sided and that just as they expect their men to notice a need in their lives that even they may have overlooked so they are expected to know without their men saying it, when he needs a new wallet!
Before you say you are generous consider whether you regularly give to people that you are not compelled to give to. If you do not, then you are only doing your responsibility. Stingy men take care of those they are responsible for at all times but will not go the extra mile or tend towards frivolity except to meet their own personal needs.
Most people are hardly either one of the two extremes but hover inbetween.
It is more blessed to give than to receive. If you do it just to get something in return then it is not giving but rather a transaction.
At this point I’d like to say don’t be a maga. Know when to draw the line!
Father Christmas aka Santa Claus despite his generosity is only remembered in December!
If when you are about to give, it does not make you happy inside then it’s usually advisable not to. Even sacrificial giving is usually done with a cheerful and expectant heart that hopes for a reward from above. God loves a cheerful giver.
And whether it is out of generousity or responsibilty, give from your heart because you love that person. That’s the only type of giving that gets God’s attention.
1 Corinthians 13 vs 3 says ‘If I give away all I have and if I deliver up my body to be burned but have not love, I gain nothing.’
Have a blessed sunday. 😉 Xoxo