Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine. Proverbs 3:9
Over our time struggling with the job loss and Chris beginning a new career, one thing that remained steady was…our giving. I believe whole heartedly that one reason God kept providing for us was because we continued to faithfully support the missionary family and compassion child that we had committed to help support. No, it’s not a ton of money, but when you have almost nothing…anything is a lot.
My point is, sometimes we need to give our way out of the struggle.
It is important, however, to sow in good places…to be responsible and make sure we are sowing in healthy soil. There have been other times when God will direct us to stop supporting a person, we don’t always know why, but it’s so important to not only know how to begin things, but to also end them.
It’s so important to remain in step with God in all seasons.
When you went out before Your people, O God, when You marched through the wasteland, the earth shook, the heavens poured down rain, before God, the One of Sinai, before God, the God of Israel. You gave abundant showers, O God; You refreshed Your weary inheritance. Your people settled in it, and from Your bounty, O God, You provided for the poor. Psalm 68:7-10
There is another facet of this practice though…we should give in other ways, besides just financial.
If you need healing, pray for others to be healed while you are waiting. If you need a mentor or more relationships in your life, then go mentor someone else while you’re waiting. If you’re a mom of littles and need a break, offer to watch a friend’s kids so she can have a break. When we give what we need, then others are far more likely to give to us.
I know this can be stretching, but if you want/need something this is your best way forward.
As a culture we’ve become miserly in many ways…but God isn’t miserly. That’s not a Christian behavior.
I’ve been in seasons of relationship with some challenging people over the years, and during that time, God has often used this method to humble me and move me forward with that person. For example, I had a person in my life who refused to ever apologize for anything…when praying about it one day, God told me that until further notice I was to apologize to that person anytime we had a disagreement…whether I thought I was right or not. I was to always humble myself and present a love offering of apology. Well, as you can imagine it was very difficult to do this…but I did. I wanted so desperately to have a healthy and strong relationship, that it fueled me. Now, years later I’m so happy to report that this person is much quicker to apologize than ever before…not only that, but we have far fewer conflicts in the first place. What a blessing it is to be obedient!!
Many godly attributes are only achieved when we are willing to walk out a life of humble obedience, placing others above ourselves. Jesus came as a servant. We are also to be servants. Serving Christ helps me to serve others.
“For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give His life as a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:28