August 26, 2008
The Blessing of Giving
“In everything I did, I showed that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said, "It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35 (NIV)
Giving is not always easy for me, is it for you? These ancient words from Acts are very difficult for this mind to comprehend. How can I be more blessed when I give than when I get? I am a girl, and in all honesty, I love to get stuff.
I must confess when God calls me to give; I don't feel like I am being blessed. Perhaps you have had similar experiences. The Lord prompts you to prepare a meal for a family who has been struck with an illness and after a long day at work, you are barely able to get yourself together enough to prepare a meal for your own family. Or maybe when you are physically exhausted and put out with your kids, He nudges you to go get your friend's children because she needs a break. No matter what the situation, when God calls us to give, we must obey and though it doesn't seem like something we want to do at the time, we come out on the other side of obedience being blessed. I can't explain exactly how it works, I just know that it does.
The Lord tells us through the prophet Isaiah that His ways and thoughts are higher than our ways and thoughts. In other words, He knows better. He sees the big picture. He has the master plan written and the only thing we need to be concerned with is doing what He asks of us, without compliant.
The meal He asks you to fix may interrupt or inconvenience your plan. You may want to question His reasoning when the Holy Spirit nudges you to take your rude co-worker out to lunch. You may be baffled by His suggestion to teach your child's Sunday School class so the regular teacher can have a break. Whatever our thought process may be at time, the bottom line is this: our decision whether we think it does or not, has eternal meaning. It means something to our eternity and to the person we are to give something to, or do something for.
Without Jesus in my heart, I would not have the ability to give to others. Basically, I am a selfish person. I remember reading today's key verse wondering, "What kind of blessing will I get for doing for others? Will it be money, a new car, or a finer home?" I am ashamed of those thoughts but they came from an infant Christian who did not understand the blessing one receives is a closer and more intimate walk with the greatest Giver who ever lived. I thankfully receive that blessing now.
Are you currently receiving blessings by being the giver that the Lord wants you to be?
Dear Lord, I need You to help me be the giver I should be. It is hard for me but Your Word says nothing is impossible for You. So Lord, will You please help me. Will you allow me to see the fruit of my obedience? I can't wait to receive and enjoy my blessing for giving: a closer walk with You. Thank You for every blessing You give me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Out of the Mouths of Babes by Wendy Pope
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Pray today's prayer aloud.
When the Lord prompts you to do something for someone, simply do it. Record His request, your response, and the blessing you receiving in a Giving Journal. Ask God to direct you to someone who needs to receive an act of kindness.
What keeps me from offering acts of kindness?
What steps do I need to take to be a better giver?
Galatians 5:22-23, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law." (NIV)
Hebrews 6:12, "We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised."(NIV)
James 1:22, "But be doers of the Word [obey the message], and not merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth]." (AMP)
© 2008 by Wendy Pope. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
Matthews, NC 28105