Thursday, April 9, 2015

The Gift of Giving

Thursday 4-9-15 (Martinez, Argentina)

Scripture reading:  1 Sam 6-7   Ps 72   2 Cor 9

S.  2 Cor 9:9-10  Godly people give generously to the poor.  Their good deeds will never be forgotten.  For God is the one who gives seed to the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will give you many opportunities to do good, and he will produce a great harvest of generosity in you.
Vs 12-13 So two good things will happen — the needs of the Christians in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanksgiving to God. You will be glorifying God through your generous gifts.
Vs 15  Thank God for his Son — a gift too wonderful for words!  NLT

O.  In this chapter the Apostle Paul is taking up the offering.  He lets us know that our God is a generous, giving God and He wants us to be like Him.  God gives the seed to the farmer.  In other words… He is the Source behind every blessing.  When we give generously we are expressing one of His wonderful attributes and thus glorifying Him.  And standing high above all the other bountiful gifts of God… is the gift of His Son… given to redeem us, making Our Creator accessible to us.  “For God so loved, He gave His only begotten Son so that anyone believing in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.”  Yes, too wonderful for words!

A.  Today I examine my own heart.  Does it pain me to dig deeply into the resources that the Lord has given me and share them with others who are in  need?  Or does it fill me with joy?  Do I truly want to be like our generous God, who gave away the only thing that could have cost Him anything… His only Son?  Paul adds in Rom 8:32 “Since God did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won't God, who gave us Christ, also give us everything else?” NLT  What is this “everything else”?  Are we going to grab this word and start ‘naming and claiming’ fancy new cars?  Hopefully this “everything else” includes giving me one of His divine attributes, the “gift of giving” to others.

P.  God, I pray for the “gift of giving” today.  Yes, I do want to be like You.  Let me recognize that my every sacrifice in giving is seen in heaven… and every act of selfish holding back is also seen above.  Give me a generous, giving heart like Your heart.  Work on me, Lord.  I’m not there yet!  Amen.


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