Often times, I think we look at giving as something we have to do. But, I don’t think that’s the way it should be. God wants us to give joyfully. But, isn’t that what we get from giving? Joy? It makes me feel good to give, especially when I know that my giving is helping someone else.
Let’s take a look at today’s sermon. You can listen to the sermon here. The Scripture comes from Philippians,
Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble. And you Philippians yourselves know that in the beginning of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church entered into partnership with me in giving and receiving, except you only. Even in Thessalonica you sent me help for my needs once and again. Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that increases to your credit.Philippians 4:14-20
Paul was glad that the Philippians helped him, but not for his sake. He described it as “a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God.” Paul knew that he would always have what he needed, so he wasn’t dependent on their giving to supply his needs. If it didn’t come from them, someone else would supply the need. So the blessing would be on the giver.
It’s a hard concept for many to accept: that if they give joyfully, God will bless them abundantly according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. No, this does not mean that God will give us everything we want.
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.Phil 4:19
God won’t enable us in our bad choices. But when we live as followers of Jesus, God supplies what we need.
Our Pastor, Jon, says that verses 13 and 19 should be looked at together. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me…and my God will supply every need of mine according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. The life that is strengthened to do all things in all circumstances, and whose every need is met with the riches of God’s glory, is the life that is lived in Christ Jesus.
This gives me such hope. So what do I have to give to the kingdom? What gifts do I have to share? We have each been given a gift. How do we know what our gift is? Seek God. He will unlock and unleash your gift. So, find your gift and give wherever and whenever you can.
This contentment that Paul had is available to us. Faith in the the sacrifice given so that we could live is what helps provide this contentment. We are nothing without Christ.
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.Heb. 11:1
A single minded focus on the Gospel is critical to bringing others into the faith. We all get the same God who loves us. We may not all get the same gifts, the same ideas, the same standard of living. But it should move us to be extravagant with our resources, our forgiveness, our grace, our mercy, and our compassion. We should give with the same extravagant generosity that our God has supplied to us.
Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.Pro. 11:25
Unleash your gift. Grab your watering can and be blessed!