Giving

Image courtesy of Dream Designs/Freedigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy of Dream Designs/Freedigitalphotos.net

What’s the first thing you think of when someone asks the question, “How much time and money do you give to matters outside of you and your family?”

Do you wonder why they are meddling in your personal business?  Are you offended because it’s none of their business?  And…do you like your answer?

All I’ve got to say is…OUCH.

We’ve all heard that it is better to give than to receive, but do we actually live this kind of life? Uh….

In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ Acts 20:35

Oh, man!  Do I ever need help in this area!!!

For some reason I’m much more occupied with receiving than I am with giving.  Sigh.

Sure, it’s easy to talk about giving, but it’s much harder to write that check, spend that extra time or leave something you want to do (a.k.a. take a nap) to help someone else that may or may not deserve our help.

AH…HA!!!

That’s part of the problem, isn’t it?  Who is deserving of our time and money?

We become the judge and jury pretty quickly when it’s our cash that is at stake.  We question what others will do with our money, time and energy and if they aren’t up to OUR snuff, than it’s a no-go…PERIOD.

But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 1Timothy 6:9

God knows us, ooooh, so well.  He realizes how easily we are distracted from His Will and how much we really would like to advance our own.  He understands that we are tempted every moment of every day to live for ourselves instead of for Him.

If we were really honest with ourselves, we would discover that WE (yep, you and me!) don’t deserve God’s love or forgiveness at all, either.  YIKES!

Without the Almighty Father’s mercy and grace through His son, Jesus Christ, we would all be doomed.

However, one of the great things about God (besides His awesome forgiveness) is that He rewards us for good behavior – even when it’s what we should be doing in the first place!!!

Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.  Malachi 3:10

If you are a parent, you know exactly how hard it is to shell out kudos to a child who takes out the garbage when that was his job anyway.

Unlike us, God promises to open the ‘windows of heaven’ for us if we do what He has already asked us to do.

The windows of heaven, you guys!

WOW! How big is that window?  And what would we get to take a glimpse of if we would open our hearts and actually GIVE like God wants us to?

Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 2 Corinthians 9:7

As said above, it doesn’t count if we truly don’t want to give.  It’s like if you ask someone to go somewhere with you, but you know they would rather be doing something else.  It’s just not as much fun!!  Plus, we can’t fake it with God because HE KNOWS!

Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you. Luke 6:38

One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want.  Proverbs 11:24

The take-away from all of these scriptures are the following:

  1. The more we give, the more God gives us.
  2. If we don’t give, we won’t ever feel content.
  3. Getting doesn’t give us joy.
  4. Giving gives us an overabundance of joy.

It just makes sense to give and to give generously because it is through our sharing of our money, time and efforts that we will find true joy and contentment in life. And isn’t that what most of us are longing for?!?!?!

God says we can test Him on this.  So, give it a try and let me know how it goes!!!  Aren’t you glad God is nicer than we are?!?!  WHEW!!!!

Some Wisdom for Today:  Proverbs 25:21 – If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat, and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink….

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