Where giving is initiated, a spirit of generosity abounds.
We often emphasized giving at our missionary training center, Youth with a Mission, in Hawaii. We sought the Lord about anything we could give to others. We did minimal discretionary spending in our early days with the mission. Several Christmas seasons passed, and our children always had a Christmas present because of the generosity of our family and friends. But we never had enough money for a gift for my wife and me.
One year, near Christmas, we got a monetary gift designated for my wife and me. With my part of the money, I bought a leather briefcase I had looked at for a long time. But one time, when we emphasized giving, I felt the Lord wanted me to give it away. I argued with the Lord a bit. I made my case that It had been a couple of years since I had gotten a Christmas present. I deserved this briefcase. Finally, I felt peace about giving it away. I realized God was requesting that I give it away, not demanding it.
Ancient Israel was required to give the first fruits, not the last ones. I gave my briefcase to another missionary in training. The next day, we found a thousand-dollar check clipped to our door, which we needed to bring us current with our staff fees.
A month or two later, I was back on the US mainland at my brother's house. He had just purchased a new briefcase. The old one was still in his office. He asked me if I needed one and then gave it to me. It was more functional than the one I gave away.
When God's people give, it releases a spirit of generosity in the heavens. Needs are met, and people get blessed by the opportunity to give and receive. God is pleased as we model His giving nature. We can never outgive God.
What are some ways God wants you to give?
(Photo courtesy of pixabay and 51581.)
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