2 Corinthians 8:9 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.
When you think about it, there is no greater possible wealth than being part of the Godhead, having created and possessing all things. However, Jesus indeed set all of that aside to come down to our level and be born as a human baby. He did that precisely to supply eternal life to us, making us heirs of the universe with Him. (Romans 8:16-17) We know that Mary and Joseph weren’t well-off, because after Jesus was born their sacrifice of purification was the one prescribed for poor people. (Luke 2:24, Leviticus 12:8) Paul wrote memorably about Jesus’ sacrifice in Philippians 2:5-11. When we really grasp that, any giving we might do fades to total insignificance. That’s not at all to say that our giving is unimportant. We are commanded to give a tenth of our income as a reminder to us of where it all comes from in the first place, and we have the privilege of participating in God’s “supply chain,” so to speak, to others, both to the Church and to individuals. That’s what giving is all about. Sadly, some teachers have descended to the level of hucksters, bilking well-meaning people for their own material wealth. They fall into the category of people Paul talked about in 1 Timothy 6:3-5, and will receive fitting punishment when they stand before the Lord. We need to steer clear of that and rejoice to give in all purity, knowing that our Source of supply will never run out.
To be honest, I’ve never been very much of a giver. I have given a tithe faithfully for many years, but not so much beyond that. My inbox is bombarded constantly with requests for money, some of them from very good and reputable organizations, but I tune virtually all of them out instantly. It is sad to become calloused, and I do pray about what the Lord would have me do. I do contribute regularly to a rather unknown orphanage in Cambodia that is run by a Japanese friend, but the amount is not significant. God has been more than gracious to me, and I don’t know what the barrier is to my giving more. I think the answer is indeed, meditating on what God has done for me and asking Him what He would have me do.
Father, thank You for this reminder. You’ve recently enabled me to set up a contribution system on my blog, but that is for people giving to me and this ministry. Help me understand where and how You want me to give, so that You may be glorified as Your plans are fulfilled. Thank You. Praise God!