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A Cheerful giver


Today’s Scripture: 2 Corinthians 6-9

“I tell you the truth,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” – -Luke 21:3-4

I spent several weeks in the African country of Liberia teaching at a small Bible college. The missionaries who oversaw the college told me of a tragedy several years before, when their house burned down and they lost everything they had. The day after the fire, a little African girl came to them with a pair of well-worn canvas sneakers and gave them to one of their daughters. They were the only shoes the African girl had, and she would likely never get another pair, but she came offering them freely, saying she wanted to help. The missionaries were overwhelmed by her sacrificial giving.

It reminded me of Paul’s description of the Macedonian churches’ response to the grace of God. Second Corinthians 8:2-4 says, “Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints.”

Paul directs our attention to Jesus Christ as the great example of what it means to give: “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich” (verse 9). Paul went on to say that our sacrificial giving should be more than an emotional response on the spur of the moment. It should be thought through and done deliberately. Christian, if you have never done it, sit down and lay out a giving plan that honors the Lord in its sacrificial generosity.

Prayer

Lord, everything I have comes from You. Guide me as I consider how to give to others out of my abundance. Amen.

To Ponder

If your giving practices were made known to Christians in other lands, would your example be a challenge and encouragement to them?

(The Navigators)