24 Feb Bless and be Blessed – 2/24/21
2 Corinthians 8:7 – “But since you excel in everything–in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you –see that you also excel in this grace of giving.”
I have always considered myself to be a faithful giver of time, talents, and personal possessions. I want people to leave my presence with the impression that what’s mine is theirs. I desire to freely give whatever I can in order to help a person in need or serve the local church. Even though that had been my mindset growing up, money/salary had remained locked away in a category of my brain I labeled: business. My family seemed to let money make them anxious, therefore ruling our lives. For this reason, I didn’t consider money to go hand-in-hand with being a loving and generous person. All I could seem to understand was that people who had lots of money to give away must be super responsible business owners. In addition, when a person had bought something for me in the past, I felt the pressure of “owing” something back in return. This left me with the impression that people shouldn’t pay for me and I shouldn’t pay for them… I wanted to be responsible for myself. One day I made an important friendship that helped change my whole mindset on monetary value. This friend gave without expecting anything at all in return. I watched for months as she freely gave when God spoke or prompted. The crazy thing? Their family seemed to never be in need… Someone always showed up to take care of the exact need at the exact right time. Journeying so closely with this friend and her family helped me realize that if I gave Him EVERY area of my life, especially my money, God would indeed take care of me in EVERY area. I now see money as the way I bless people in God’s kingdom in order to pay forward the fact that I have been so blessed. Money doesn’t control me anymore, but instead I use it in a way that reminds me that nothing I have is my own in the first place. God uses our money to perform miracles every day, which is MORE than what we can do with it… If only we’d just completely surrender that area of our lives. It’s not the amount that matters, it’s the heart of the giver.
God I pray that you would help us to see ways that we can be more generous with our time and money. I pray that money would not have a hold on us, but that by trusting you we can surrender every area of our life to You so your purpose may be lived out through us. Make us a willing and generous people. Every time we give or receive, may we remember that You are the orchestrator. You are the miracle worker, and this is just one of the avenues for Your glory, Amen.