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The Cycle of the Gift: Family Wealth and Wisdom by Keith Whitaker, Susan E. Massenzio, James E. Hughes

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Chapter 2

The Spirit of the Gift

While many people think of giving as having to do with birthdays, holidays, and perhaps end-of-the-year tax planning, we think it is much bigger than that: Family giving is integral to flourishing. What makes us think that family giving can have such power and impact? The key is what we call the spirit of the gift.

The spirit of a gift reveals itself first in the intention of the giver. The intention first launches the meteor-gift. It is the answer to the question, why are you giving this to me?

But intention is just the beginning of the story. People like to say, “It’s the thought that counts.” It certainly does, but it is not the only thing that counts. Many gifts also carry qualities that transcend the thoughts ...

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