A pastor friend of ours shared an interaction he’d had with a member following one of his weekend messages. He was in the middle of a six-week sermon series on handling life issues from a godly perspective. This friend had shared what God’s Word said about health, nutrition, entertainment, and even sex. But it was after the Sunday he addressed the topic of money that one of the members of his church approached him and said…
“Pastor, now you’ve gotten too personal.”
I’ve heard countless people complain about the church asking for money. Most people seem to feel like the church should simply stay out of their wallets.
But to do that, we’d have to ignore much of Scripture.
A verse we’ve all heard countless times…
You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.”2 Corinthians 9:7
Why would the Bible say that “God loves a cheerful giver”?
Maybe it’s because He knows our hearts and He knows that fear is the biggest obstacle to generosity.
The enemy has always wanted people to doubt God’s ability to meet their needs, so he tempts us with thoughts like…
What if I run out of money? What if I can’t take care of myself and my family? What if I have a financial emergency? What if?
But you and I can defeat the enemy’s lies with God’s promises…
God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.2 Corinthians 9:8
God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.2 Corinthians 9:10
Cheerful giving is putting our lives in God’s hands. It’s willingly allowing ourselves to be used as God’s instruments to help meet the needs of others. It is trusting God to keep His promise to be with us and to lovingly take care of all our needs.
A Prayer to Know the Joy of Being a Cheerful Giver
Father, I believe Your promises are sure. Please forgive me for listening to the enemy’s lies and giving in to fear. Please forgive me for not knowing Your Word well enough to use it as the weapon I need to fight back against his temptations.
You promise that when I SEEK You first, You will provide all I need to trust You and follow where You lead. (Luke 12:31) You knew that in this life, money would be a challenge for us. You knew we would be tempted by idolatry and greed. You knew we would allow fear to lead us. And so You made a way for us. You sent Jesus to suffer our punishment that we might receive forgiveness through faith in Him.
And He said:
- “You cannot serve God and money.” (Matthew 6:24)
- “Don’t store up treasures on earth.” (Matthew 6:19)
- “Don’t worry about what you will eat or what you will wear.” (Matthew 6:25)
- “Give to the poor.” (Matthew 19:21)
- “Give, and it will be given to you; a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over—will be poured into your lap.” (Luke 6:38)
By the power of Your Holy Spirit, please give me everything I need to trust Your promises that I might experience the joy of being a cheerful giver. By Your grace and for Your glory. Amen.
It’s funny, isn’t it? It’s often harder to trust God with our daily physical and emotional needs than it is to trust Him with our spiritual ones. Yet He wants us to trust and obey Him completely.
I believe God’s promise to meet our needs when we SEEK, KNOW and TRUST His will.
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.Matthew 6:33
And I believe that includes being a cheerful giver!
It’s not a promise to give us everything we may want. But…
By His grace, God will help us make wise financial decisions and help us to love and care for each other without worry and fear of not having “enough” in the future.
Even if it makes us uncomfortable (and as I said yesterday . . . I don’t like writing or talking about money) but as you and I SEEK God’s will, it’s important for us to open our whole lives to Him—even our wallets.
On today’s note write:
God loves a cheerful giver.
May God bless you as you prayerfully SEEK His will today about ways you can joyfully share the blessings God has given to you.
If you’d like to know a little more about our journey to the joy of cheerful giving, click here.
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