This Week's Verse: 1 Timothy 6:18, "Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and should give generously to those in need, always being ready to share with others whatever God has given them." (NLT)
I have been blessed throughout my life in various ways. Whenever bill time came around each month, there is always enough money in the checking account to pay those bills. I have need of very little and feel led to help others when I see a need.
I have in the past been able to help others with their financial needs. I don’t say this boastfully because, just like this devotion, I do it anonymously. I try to live as it says in Matthew 6:2-4, “When you give a gift to someone in need, don't shout about it as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I assure you, they have received all the reward they will ever get. But when you give to someone, don't tell your left hand what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in secret, and your Father, who knows all secrets, will reward you.”
A couple years ago, I knew of a family that was struggling financially and I felt led to help them out. Another time I felt God telling me to give money to another family that I perceived as a whole lot wealthier than me. I thought You’ve got to be kidding. These people are far better off than I am! Why do they need any money? Especially mine! Are You sure? (Don’t you question God when you think you’ve heard from Him, but just don’t want to be obedient?) But in the end, I was obedient and gave them the money God instructed me to give.
I’ve also been involved in WBGL's "Random Acts of Christmas". I’m not trying to brag, just to set an example of how God can work in our lives and the lives of others if we are obedient. Obviously, we can’t help everyone all the time. God will speak to you if you are to help in a situation.
Since these “acts of charity”, I have been overwhelmed by the ways God has given back to me. For instance, I was at a store about to purchase an item that was supposed to be $250. When all was said and done, it ended up only costing me $80! Another situation happened when I went to pay the dues for an organization I belong to. The regular membership dues were over $200, but this year I received a discount and they only cost me $60! About a month ago, I ‘pre-figured’ my taxes just to see how much I was going to have to owe this year. I estimated that I was going to have to pay over $900 (Federal and State combined). But a few weeks ago, I was doing my taxes and noticed a tax credit that I had overlooked and another deduction that I had not figured in. So now, instead of OWING $900, I am getting a REFUND of $702 from the Fed and I only owe the state $105. Holy Cow! That’s a total variance of $1500!!! (Thank God for procrastination!!)
Just remember, money is not really ours to begin with. We are to be good stewards of our money, but not to hoard it for selfish desires. Give from your heart and you will be blessed in return. But please don’t give just to manipulate God into re-paying you. God cannot be mocked (Galatians 6:7).
I read a facebook status that said, “God can do a lot more with what you don’t have, than you can do with what you do have.” Listen to His voice and you will be rewarded.
Father, thank you that You continue to bless us in many ways. Help us to not be caught up in the world and place more value on things than we do You. Show us the areas where You would have us to serve and give. Helps us to be better stewards of the gifts You give us. In Jesus name, Amen.
Is God calling you to give to someone today? It doesn’t have to be monetary; perhaps there is something you have that you could give to someone. It may be just the giving of your time. I encourage you however to give without looking for something in return. Give from your heart that God has spoken to.
Luke 6:38, "If you give, you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving—large or small—it will be used to measure what is given back to you."(NLT)
Mark 12:42-44, "Sitting across from the offering box, he was observing how the crowd tossed money in for the collection. Many of the rich were making large contributions. One poor widow came up and put in two small coins—a measly two cents. Jesus called his disciples over and said, 'The truth is that this poor widow gave more to the collection than all the others put together. All the others gave what they'll never miss; she gave extravagantly what she couldn't afford—she gave her all.'"(MSG)
2 Cor. 9:7-8, "You must each make up your own mind as to how much you should give. Don't give reluctantly or in response to pressure. For God loves the person who gives cheerfully. And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others."(NLT)