My friend, may I ask you a question? What motivates our giving? If we give to others because God has given to us, is this true charity? Should our charity glorify God from the heart while putting the things of this life in their rightful places?
Life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm Mark Brunner.
The acetic life, free from the bondage of riches and the inevitable ties that possessions and material wealth so tether us with, has been embraced by some over the centuries, as the true, charitable way of life. Unfortunately, most of us wouldn’t live up to such standards of poverty. Besides if these were the true measures of charity, what a miserable, poor, and abject world this would be. Surely, God didn’t mean for us to be so poor and downcast. Perhaps true charity has more to do with what we have and how we manage it than what we don’t have and, therefore, have no need to manage.
Here’s a thought: If it had been a virtue to cast away riches and live in destitute devotion to poverty and meagerness, the biblical Patriarch Abram was a tremendous failure. He walked with Kings and his great wealth was a matter of common knowledge in Canaan. Do we praise Father Abram unwisely? Is this a portion of the Bible that we should avoid because it doesn’t fit the model for “spiritual poverty” proscribed by Jesus to the throngs in Galilee? Or, is there something key in the character of Abram that provides the hint that it isn’t money or power that causes the sin? Scriptures reveal a picture of a patriarch who was adept at handling matters concerning his wealth. They also reveal a picture of a man who had a giving heart and a gentle spirit coupled with that great wealth. It didn’t lead him; he led it. Abram managed what God had given him well. In turn God rewarded him richly throughout the course of his life. Abram’s secret was simple; when it came to choosing between wealth and God, he invariably chose the latter. His life was an example of a man who, despite his riches, would always have reckoned on the side of possessing more of God than more of money. He was, as Martin Luther put it, a man possessed of a great treasure, a “generous and hospitable” spirit.
True charity has everything to do with what motivates our giving. If we give to others because God has given to us, that’s true charity. Charity, that glorifies God and puts the things of this life in their rightful places, is derived from a heart that truly would “rather have Jesus than the praise of men.” Be thankful for what God has blessed you with, large or small, and always be willing to part with it as easily has it has been given to you in the first place. That was Abram’s great treasure and ours.
We pray. Father. I give thanks for all the amazing gifts You have blessed me with in this life. Thank You for the clouds in the sky and the grass beneath my feet. Thank You for the roof over my head that shelters me from the cold and the food in my stomach that nourishes my body. Thank You for the clothes on my back and the knowledge in my head. Most of all God thank You for Your everlasting love, guidance, and understanding. If I prosper in this life may I always remember that my prosperity is a blessing from You and, as with all blessings, it is meant to be shared. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
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<firstname.lastname@example.org> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.