Encouragement for Today - December 6, 2012
December 6, 2012
When God Asks You to Give
"Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God that He has given you." Deuteronomy 16:17 (ESV)
The past few weeks at church I've heard amazing messages about generosity. The kind of messages that linger ... entangle themselves around your heart ... and rise to the surface of your thoughts often.
A guest pastor visited our church and changed the way I look at giving.
I consider myself a generous person. But in my early childhood I knew the pain of not having enough. Wondering how the bills would be paid. Fearing the checkbook balance.
So, I've been hesitant to be fully generous. The kind of generous where the only way to fill the gap between what I'm comfortable giving and what I feel God calling me to give is sheer trust that I'm hearing God correctly.
A million "what ifs" nag, telling me to pull back my hand from offering too much. Other people can be that generous. Not me. Not with 5 kids - 2 in college and 2 more heading that way.
But then I clearly feel the tug to do what only makes sense if God Himself tells me to do it. Open my hand. Fill my world with trust. Bigger trust. The kind of trust I know would please God.
I feel Him speaking into the depths of my soul ... "I own it all. I'm not asking you to give Me 'your' money. I'm asking you to return what's Mine and watch Me move."
I ache to see Him move in my life. It's my deepest desire.
With this stirring still fresh, I challenged my office staff at Proverbs 31 Ministries to go through our humble space and look for things to give away.
Although we were in great need, I heard in the message, "It has to be given away to be multiplied." God challenged me - "What can you give away in the midst of your need?"
And I knew God was saying, "Get it all in order. Every bit I've entrusted to you ... get it in order and position yourself to give generously without hesitation or reservation."
We had things we talked about consigning ... things like ficus trees, bookshelves, and flower arrangements. But God challenged me "What can you give?" And I knew ...
So instead of consigning the items, we gave them away.
Later that afternoon a staff member came to me with a huge smile. She held out a letter. We'd received an anonymous grant from a foundation in Texas for over $3,000. That's a huge gift for our ministry. And it's probably ten times the amount of the total we'd given away that day.
It was as if a dam broke in my soul. Not because of the money God provided. That was a blessing for sure. But it wasn't about the money. It was about seeing God move. And my trust deepening. And my heart softening. And my hands opening.
This week, Proverbs 31 Ministries needs to raise what feels like an overwhelming amount. We have some big needs. But please know that I don't pull a salary from Proverbs 31 Ministries. I just want to help the ongoing efforts of reaching women every day.
My personal life has been touched and changed by God through Proverbs 31 Ministries. He has helped build my home and as a thank offering I want to help build Proverbs 31 Ministries. There are some big needs to help the ongoing efforts of reaching women every day.
The specific ministry area I would love to have your help with is the $100,000 it takes to fund our free daily devotions that we send to over 500,000 women and our radio ministry that reaches millions of women across the world each day.
With a heart full of trust I humbly ask you to join me in making a donation to Proverbs 31 Ministries.
Dear Lord, thank You for all of the blessings You have placed in my life. Continue to cultivate in me a heart for giving, for You have already given so much to me. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Reflect and Respond:
May we invite you into our journey of trusting God to provide? By investing in women's lives through Proverbs 31 Ministries, you will help lead millions to the heart of God! Partner with us by clicking here.
As God reveals His vision for the expansion of our ministry, we realize we can't do this without you. Would you please pray about joining us? Please take a moment to hear this message from Lysa TerKeurst and Renee Swope.
2 Corinthians 9:6-7, "Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." (NIV)
© 2012 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105