here's another thought about giving money from paul's second letter to the christians in corinth...
the churches in macedonia had collected money to give to struggling christians in jersusalem. in this passage, paul expresses what the real motive is for giving money:
Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality. At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then there will be equality, as it is written: "He who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little." 2 Corinthians 8:13-15
as foreign as it sounds, the desire is for equality among believers. sometimes, god blesses people with a great deal of resources...while at the same time, there may be others that are in great need. the goal is for everybody to have their needs met (equality). sometimes, you will give out of your supply. sometimes, others will give out of their supply...maybe even to you!
it's kind of fascinating to me that paul's first goal is not to meet needs, but to experience equality. do you realize that the great "equalizer" is not what you make, but what you give?