The Holy Bible
10 Here is my advice: It would be good for you to finish what you started a year ago. Last year you were the first who wanted to give, and you were the first to begin doing it. 11 Now you should finish what you started. Let the eagerness you showed in the beginning be matched now by your giving. Give in proportion to what you have. 12 Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have.
(Bible Translation and Location: New Living Translation – 2 Corinthians 8:10-12)
In my previous devotional I addressed the idea of giving to God, as we are blessed. In today’s scripture I am reminded of the New Testament story of the ‘Widow’s Mite’ where Jesus highlighted the penny offering dropped in by a widow. Because it was given from the heart and represented everything the widow had to give, Jesus was overjoyed with her gift. Personally in growing up, a quarter was a frequent offering given to me to place in the offering plate. Later while still at home, I remember that increased to a dollar. When I started working and was taught about the biblical standards for giving, it almost killed me to know that I was actually giving one hundred dollars to the church at one time! It wasn’t until I recognized that God was blessing me beyond measure with the 90% I had left to meet my bills with, and spend recreationally, that I understood that I had no reason to judge what the church might do with all this extra money I was giving. Rather, I learned to praise God for all His many riches that He blessed me with each day, and in return, for allowing me to give a portion back to Him for His continued work here on earth. I am a firm believer in church members giving freely of their tithes and offering to the Lord. I am also a firm believer that, based on my personal experience, God will open the doors of heaven and bless you with more than enough to still meet your earthly financial obligations. Let me encourage you to look at your income in this way: If you earn $1,000 gross pay, $200 of that may be taken out in taxes – so you can’t bank on the $1,000 as your spendable income, you can only count on $800. If you are a follower of Christ, then you can’t bank on the $800, because $100 of that gross income belongs to God as your tithe, so you can only bank on actual spendable income of $700. Now for those who are new to this principle, there is no economic class that will teach you how God can help you meet $800 worth of bills with only $700, but friend let me be quick to remind you that no professor can tell you how the Red Sea was parted for God’s chosen people to cross safely across to the other side either. Nor how Lazarus, who had already begun to decompose in his grave, yet he was brought back to life by Jesus! Remember, if we could figure the acts of Jesus out in our minds, then it is, or was not an act of Jesus. The one thing I can encourage you with this morning, based on personal experiences, is that when you place your faith and trust in Jesus, then you must do what He says, in expectation and assurance that He will do what He said He would do for you! His love never changes, and He’s still God, friend!
When I consider the beauty around me today: the ocean and all that it brings forth for us to survive on and enjoy; the plants and all the vegetables and fruit that plays such a vital part in my health; the wonderful family, friends and even strangers that I meet who enrich my life; who am I to question You oh God about working out Your will and way in my life? I just celebrated my 44th year at work, when some stay only a very short time before moving on to ‘greener grasses’. I will be celebrating my 39th wedding anniversary tomorrow (God willing) to the same lovely lady, while I look at statistics that more than 50% of marriages end in divorce. I can thank my God from the bottom of my heart that He’s still God in every way, especially in my life. With all that reassurance Lord, I humbly ask that You will continue to bless me, and Your other servants who has Your heart to give in support of Your work here on earth. May our hearts always be appreciative of Your many gifts that You provide for us, as incentive to continue giving from hearts of love. May Your work flourish in our churches and in our communities. May we continue to willingly and gladly serve You in and through everything we do and say everyday, so that those who may not have accepted You as Lord yet, will see Your hand at work in us and have a stronger desire and intent to know You more today than ever considered before in their life.
FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day‘s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL!