The Race

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As a young man, I could run quite fast. It was the awkward, comical run of a lanky teen, but it was fast. My brother didn’t have a chance as he was ten years younger than me. Well, that didn’t stop him from trying to succeed. We raced many times, and over and over, he would get trounced by his older, faster and significantly taller sibling — me. Realizing that, at age six, he couldn’t compete with his sixteen-year-old brother, he started to devise a plan to win races. He would use his quick wit, cunningly changing the finish line after the start of the race. 

I can still vividly recall the words of my younger brother, “Hey! Race you to the mailbox. On your mark, get set . . . GO!” and just before reaching the aforementioned mailbox-as-a-finish line, I would hear the words of my younger brother, “Beat you to the tree!”

Do you not know that in a race, all the runners run, but only one gets the prize?
Run in such a way as to get the prize.
1 Corinthians 9:24

In order to “get the prize,” my younger brother would change the finish line to give himself an advantage that would not have otherwise been achievable.

Just like the race with my brother, planned giving goals need to be changed sometimes to attain the desired outcome. One such recent change available to those 72 or older is the ability to purchase a Charitable Gift Annuity (CGA) with funds from their Individual Retirement Account. The IRS has restricted this giving tool to $53,000, available only once to the IRA owner.

Some of the benefits include:

Satisfying part or all of the Required Minimum Distribution
Receiving a charitable deduction in the year of the gift
Initiating a lifelong income stream

In your quest to generate income in your retirement and allocate funds to further the gospel, maybe it’s time to consider moving the finish line by setting up an IRA-funded Charitable Gift Annuity.

For more information on how you can move your finish line, please contact James Petty at 269-473-5001 or email at