READING: Proverbs 16-18, 2 Corinthians 8:16-9:15
I’ve read this text many times, and I’ve heard more than one stewardship sermon based on it (in fact, I’ve used the text myself as a pastor): “Each person should do as he has decided in his heart—not reluctantly or out of compulsion, since God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Cor 9:7). We are to give to support God’s work not with regret, and not because others pressure us to do it, but voluntarily and excitedly because God has so graciously given to us. There is to be a sense of delight in giving to God and His people.
And, the older I get, the more I love giving—and this text means more to me than it ever has. I admit that Pam and I have come to the place in life that giving generously is easier than it once was, but I also learned early in my Christian walk that giving would require sacrifice. The difference now is that what is a financial sacrifice no longer “feels” like a sacrifice because it’s simply a gift we want to give. Generosity is fun for us, and I pray that God sees us as cheerful givers.
God’s gift to us of life and salvation through Christ is so indescribable that all we can do is be thankful and return to Him a portion of what is already His in the first place.
PRAYER: “Thank You, Lord, for Your gifts to us. Help us to give with more enthusiasm than we’ve ever given.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Proverbs 19-21, 2 Corinthians 10