GAIN­ING BY GIV­ING

Activated - - NEWS - By Steve Hearts Steve Hearts has been blind since birth. He is a writer, mu­si­cian, and mem­ber of the Fam­ily In­ter­na­tional in North Amer­ica. This ar­ti­cle was adapted from a pod­cast on Just1Thing, 3 a Chris­tian char­ac­ter-build­ing web­site for young peo­ple. ■

Giv­ing is eas­ier to talk about than to do. This is es­pe­cially true when it in­volves sac­ri­fice. On the other hand, the Bi­ble shows that God greatly hon­ors this kind of giv­ing.

“Je­sus sat down at 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. But a poor wi­dow came and put in two very small cop­per coins, worth only a frac­tion of a penny. Call­ing his dis­ci­ples to him, Je­sus said, ‘I tell you the truth, this poor wi­dow has put more into the trea­sury than all the oth­ers. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in ev­ery­thing—all she had to live on.’”

1

Quite pos­si­bly, some of those rich peo­ple gave out of duty or a de­sire to be noted for their giv­ing, rather than out of a sin­cere love for God. It was no great sac­ri­fice on their part ei­ther. The wi­dow, on the other hand, was poor but will­ing to give all she had. She was giv­ing with a sac­ri­fi­cial heart. That’s why Je­sus sin­gled her out for such praise.

We tend to give more freely when it doesn’t cost us any­thing. But King David re­fused to give to the Lord “of that which cost him noth­ing.”

2 Sev­eral years ago, I prayed specif­i­cally for an Ova­tion guitar. As soon as I got one, I felt God speak to me about giv­ing it to some­one else who re­ally needed a guitar. This sur­prised me and made me won­der how I would ever be able to save up for one again. But there was no doubt­ing what I felt in my heart I needed to do.

About a week af­ter I gave it away, I was in­vited to sing at the church of a mu­si­cian friend who owned a mu­sic store. When I told him I had no guitar to play, he said, “No prob­lem. I’ll choose some­thing from my store and let you use it.” It turned out to be an Ova­tion guitar. I was thrilled!

When the ser­vice was over, I sought out my friend to thank him and re­turn the in­stru­ment, but he said: “While you were singing, God clearly told me to bless you and your mission work with this guitar.”

I left that church feeling as though I were walk­ing on air.

Al­though we may not al­ways reap ma­te­rial bless­ings as a re­sult of our giv­ing, it never goes un­re­warded.

1. Mark 12:41–44 NIV

2. See 2 Sa­muel 24:24.

3. www.just1thing.com

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