Let’s Be Givers
41 Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. 42 But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.
43 Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”
1st. King 17:12-16
12 “As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.”
13 Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. 14 For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’”
15 She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. 16 For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.
On a scale of one to ten, with ten being the highest, how would you rank your giving? Most of us would probably feel that we give adequately. Some would probably admit that they don’t give nearly enough. And even fewer would say that they have ever given sacrificially.
I have come to realize over the years, that my level of giving is in direct correlation to my view of who God is. When I finally wrapped my head around the fact, that I own nothing, and God owns everything, I was able to release that which He had loaned to me more freely. I am not the source of my provision, but God is.
It is one thing to be a good steward of that which God has entrusted to us, and it is totally another to be stingy. When I looked up the definition of the word stingy it said; unwilling to give or spend, to be ungenerous. I personally would not like to have that label associated with my name. What about you?
Could it be that those who are stingy, think that they are the source of what they have been blessed with? With this thought pattern, it is easy to become a person who starts to worship and hoard their possessions instead of worshipping God who is the source of everything. We should always be mindful to worship the Giver instead of the gifts.
In Mark 12:41-43 Jesus speaks of the sacrificial gift that a poor widow gave. She only had two small copper coins to give, which were only worth a few cents. Jesus told His disciples that the widow had put more into the treasury than all of the others because they gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything- all that she had to live on. This would definitely be considered sacrificial giving.
In 1st King 17, the widow at Zarephath had only a handful of oil and a little olive oil in a jug. She made Elijah a loaf of bread with all that she had, even before feeding herself and her son. Although the widow initially thought that after she and her son ate what little they had, she would lay down and die. God honored her generosity by promising that; “The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends the rain on the land”. What incredible faith she had, sharing when she didn’t even know where her next meal would come from.
Giving is absolutely an act of faith. It’s trusting that in some way, somehow God will continue to provide more.
Please be clear, I am not referring only to our financial gifts, but also to your time, gifts, and talents. Any resource that God has given to us is to be generously shared with others. Why not start today looking for more opportunities in which you can serve God by giving to others? When you feel hesitant to share be mindful to remember that you can’t beat God’s giving, no matter how hard you try!
Other Scriptures On Giving
35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’
2nd Corinthians 9:7
7 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.
38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
16 And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.
Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.
The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor.
Those who give to the poor will lack nothing, but those who close their eyes to them receive many curses.