If we assume that the Lord owns all that we have, then we must assume that He wants us to manage it (stewardship) in a way that would please Him. In fact, we are called to pray about every decision that we make which includes those decisions about passing the wealth to the next generation.
When creating an Estate Plan, we must determine how much goes to the kids (inheritance). It is assumed by many that all that remains after we die should go to the children. But is that what God is calling us to? I don’t think so.
How do we determine what the right inheritance is?
Solomon said these words at the end of his life: “I hated all the things I had toiled for under the sun, because I must leave them to the one who comes after me. And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool?” Ecclesiastes 2:18
I think the right way of looking at giving to the children is to measure how it will impact the Kingdom.
Wow, you say.
I have a child that not only does not follow Jesus, but also is a recluse. What do I do for him? Or you have a child whose wife is a spender and can’t wait to dig into the inheritance to buy clothes, cars and a bigger house. Or you have a child that is simply lost and doesn’t know what he or she is going to do with their lives.
Key questions to ask yourself when considering how and how much to give the children:
- How will the family virtues be transmitted through the wealth that is given to them?
- How will you communicate the family-giving legacy to the family? What is the impact on the Kingdom? (Remember, God owns it all and you are called to be good stewards of your wealth including how and how much you give the kids.)
- How will you give to the kids and when?
- Will you bequeath the family legacy of giving?
- How will you educate the kids on wealth while you are alive?
- How well prepared are your heirs families for the wealth?
- How will you continue to communicate your mission and vision for your wealth within the scope of Godly wisdom on an annual basis?
- How will you transition your business to the family without leaving out some family members?
Obviously, this is not an exhaustive list, but demonstrates the types of questions that need to be addressed.
For more information on how Kardia can help you build an enduring family legacy, please contact us or call 303-752-0590.