Bob and Lynette EwertBrenda Hamm
After more than four decades of farming, Bob and Lynette Ewert are seeing God use what they have sown become an investment in the lives of the next generation. They gave their lives to planting crops and growing their farm in Minnesota, but now believe it’s time to consider how to make that work into something even more meaningful.
Bob purchased the home site with additional acreage in Mt. Lake, Minnesota, from his father in 1974. While he didn’t have much financially, he did have firsthand knowledge of the hard work it required. The desire to grow something from a small seed was in his blood.
In 1989 Bob and Lynette married and she joined him in making the farm profitable. It wasn’t easy.
“In the early years of our marriage, we were just scraping by. It felt like we were working for the bank and the farm dealership to pay off our debt,” says Bob. “We didn’t give much in the early years.”
Eventually, the farm began to turn a profit and as the debt was paid down, their giving went up. The Ewert’s conviction that God is the owner of all, helped them find peace in giving.
In 2014, Bob and Lynette gifted one tract of land to MB Foundation as part of their estate planning. This gift plan, called Life Estate, allows them to farm the land during their lifetime and direct the land to charity as a legacy gift after they pass away.
As the Ewerts considered selling the home place in 2021, they met with their CPA and a planned giving advisor at MB Foundation to develop a strategy to include charitable giving. They gifted half of the property to their Donor Advised Fund at MB Foundation, from which they can give financial support to the ministries they love. One such ministry is LCC International University in Lithuania, which provides Christian higher education to students from the former Soviet Republics. The Ewert Scholarship is established for Ukrainian students.
The second part of the strategy led them to sell another portion of their farmland to their first cousin’s son, JD Tippin, and his wife, Anne. Growing up with an agricultural background, the Tippins continue to pursue that passion with guidance from their relatives. The sale represents years of hard work by the Ewerts, passed on to the Tippins. It is an investment in the family’s next generation of farming.
“It feels right. It’s fun to see how God will use what is given,” says Lynette.
JD and Anne continue the legacy and conviction that God owns everything. Upon completion of the sale, JD told Bob, “The ‘owner’ of the property isn’t changing, just the tenant.”
Bob says, “It has been meaningful to give away something we built, to invest in something else. We are here to do some good.” He continues, “Money isn’t the thing. The older you get, the more you think about what is meaningful.”