Tag: cheerful giver

The joy of sowing!

Scripture reading for July 5th:  Psalm 126-129

Key Scriptures:  Psalm 126:3-6 “The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.  Restore our fortunes, O Lord, like the streams in the Negev.  Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.  He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.”

As the pilgrims ascended the climb to Mt. Zion and the temple mount, they were surrounded by harsh desert and rocky soil.  That reminded them of the difficult times that they had experience and where they sowed, often in tears, because of war, captivity, or their own disobedience.  As they returned to God’s dwelling place, they sowed songs of joy.  They knew God would not disappoint them and His presence would bring joy and fruitfulness!

The joy of sowing:  “Remember this:  Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all time, having all you need, you will abound in every good work.”  (2nd Corinthians 9:6-8

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Sufficiency in all things, always!

Scripture reading for August 9th:  2nd Corinthians 9

Key Scriptures for over-comers:  2nd Corinthians 9:6-8  “Remember this:  Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  Ans God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times having all you need, you will abound in every good work.”  

Being a farmer, I am well aware of the law of sowing and reaping.  You must sow before you reap.  You have to use enough seed to reap the maximum benefit.  The sower must also sow in faith, with a cheerful disposition and expectation of harvest.  You harvest more than you sowed because seed multiplies because of God’s amazing grace of design and His blessing for provision.   These principles also apply in giving of tithes and offerings to God for His work.  If we sow cheerfully and generously, we will reap abundantly!  God will shower His grace on us to enable us to continue giving and doing His work!

Observations for over-comers:  Believers are cheerful and generous people who give freely and enjoy sufficiency in all things at all times enabling good works to God’s glory!  “Praise the Lord.  Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who finds great delight in His commands. . . .He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor, his righteousness endures forever; his horn will be lifted high in honor.”  (Psalm 112:1,9)

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His Indescribable Gift!

Scripture reading for August 10th:  2nd Corinthians 9

Paul was encouraging the church at Corinth to cultivate the ‘grace of giving’!  He went on to instruct them in planned giving for missions work.  He was coming to receive their promised offering and they should prepare it by making the need known to the brothers and preparing the gift ahead of time.

“Remember this:  Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”  (2nd Corinthians 9:6-7)  Paul encouraged these brothers with an agricultural example.  Sowing seed brought harvests.  If seed was sown sparingly, a small crop would result.  Enough seed must be turned loose and allowed to go into the soil to produce an abundant harvest.  Giving is like sowing seed.  We must not be reluctant to turn loose of our offerings!  We must give cheerfully, knowing that God will bring back our seed with an abundant return.  It takes faith to sow as well as to give!

“And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. . . .Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.”  (2nd Corinthians 9:8,10)   This is God’s way of supplying the needs of His church and also the needs of His people!  As they learn the grace of giving, God multiplies their harvest!  “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”  (2nd Corinthians 9:15)

 

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Connecting with generosity!

Scripture reading for April 22nd: 1st Chronicles 28-29

“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion,  for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things, at all times, having all you that you need, you will abound in every good work.” 2nd Corinthians 9:7-8

Preachers are sometimes pushy or manipulative in asking the people to give.  There are so many needs and money is often a limiting factor in the work of the church, at least in our minds.    The love of money keeps many from giving and holds back God’s blessing in the people as well.  This area is a touchy area for many because of the various abuses and the strongholds of idolatry to money and materialism in this land.

King David set forth his personal giving to fund the vision of building the temple of the Lord.   A good leader will always lead the way for those he is calling to help.  David gave of his personal treasure 188 tons of gold, 375 tons of silver, 675 tons of bronze and 3,750 tons of iron.  This was  a fortune by today’s values!  From this position of personal dedication, he challenged his other leaders to willingly too.

The leaders caught the spirit of generosity that King David had modeled.  They also contributed “willingly and wholeheartedly” to the Lord.  (1st Chronicles 29:6-9)  David rejoiced with a psalm of praise to the Lord!  He attributed everything that he had to God’s grace! (1st Chronicles 29:11-12)  We can boast about nothing!  He alone is to be praised!

David prayed for the people: “And now I have seen with joy how willingly your people who are here have given to you.  O, Lord, God of our fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, keep this desire in the hearts of your people forever and keep their hearts loyal to you.” (1st Chronicles 29:17-18)  That is my prayer for each of us today!  May you have a willing heart to give!  If you are a leader, may you set an example of extravagant giving.  May your heart remain loyal to the Lord and open to be generous forever!

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Connecting through cheerful giving!

Scripture reading for January 31st: Exodus 35-40

The Lord told Moses to have the Israelites bring Him an offering. (Exodus 25:1-2)  He wanted those who were willing to give as their heart prompted them.  His job was to receive the offering from the people and use it for God’s intended purpose to build the Tabernacle.

God’s desire was that His people learn to be willing givers and experience blessing.  He was the original giver and set an example for us.  Everything we have has come from His hand!  He sends rain for the earth and crops.  He gives strength and ability to work.  His gracious giving is hard to understand, considering how unfaithful and wasteful we sometimes are.

Jesus taught that our giving was a prerequisite for determining God’s measure back to us.  “Give and it shall 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.” (Luke 6:38)  The people in Exodus willingly gave a huge amount of gold, silver, bronze, oil and cloth.  They also freely gave of their time and talents to make what was needed for God’s house!  They gave so generously that Moses had to tell them to stop! (Exodus 36:6-7)

Giving is the one place in Scripture that God says you can test Him!  Malachi 3:8-12 instructs us test God by bringing the whole tithe into the storehouse (where you are fed).   God will then open the windows of heaven and pour out a blessing you cannot contain.  May the Lord open the windows of heaven on you as you cheerfully “bring him an offering”!

“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound to every good work.” 2nd Corinthians 9:7-8

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God loves willing givers!

Scripture reading for April 21st: 1st Chronicles 28-29

“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion,  for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things, at all times, having all you that you need, you will abound in every good work.” 2nd Corinthians 9:7-8

Preachers are sometimes pushy or manipulative in asking the people to give.  There are so many needs and money is often a limiting factor in the work of the church, at least in our minds.    The love of money keeps many from giving and holds back God’s blessing in the people as well.  This area is a touchy area for many because of the various abuses and the strongholds of idolatry to money and materialism in this land.

I love the 29th chapter of 1st Chronicles.  In this chapter, King David sets forth what he is personally giving to fund the vision he has been given of building the temple of the Lord.  He sets the example of personal dedication by first giving sacrificially himself.  A good leader will always lead the way for those he is calling to help.  David gives of his personal treasure 188 tons of gold, 375 tons of silver, 675 tons of bronze and 3,750 tons of iron!   From this position of personal dedication, he challenged his other leaders to give as well.

His leaders caught the spirit of generosity that King David had modeled.  They contributed “willingly and wholeheartedly” to the Lord.  (1st Chronicles 29:6-9)  David rejoiced with a psalm of praise to the Lord for His greatness and power.  He attributed everything that he had to God’s grace! (1st Chronicles 29:11-12)  We can boast about nothing because all things come from God’s hand to us!

David prayed for the people: “And now I have seen with joy how willingly your people who are here have given to you.  O, Lord, God of our fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, keep this desire in the hearts of your people forever and keep their hearts loyal to you.” (1st Chronicles 29:17-18)

May God give each of us a heart to give!  If you are a leader, may you set an example of extravagant giving.  May your heart remain loyal to the Lord and open to be generous forever!  God loves a cheerful giver!

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God loves the cheerful giver!

Scripture reading for September 7th: 2nd Corinthians 9:1-15

How do you respond when the preacher calls for the offering?  What is you feeling when he asks for a second offering to help with missions or benevolence?  Do you find yourself groaning or speaking negatively to yourself?  If you have trouble with these questions, the Lord wants to help you with a new attitude!

Paul was preparing the Corinthians for his own coming to receive an offering for the saints at Jerusalem and did not want to come and find them unprepared.  “So I thought it necessary to urge the brothers to visit you in advance and finish arrangements for the generous gift you had promised.  Then it will be ready as a generous gift, not as one grudgingly given.  Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2nd Corinthians 9:5-7)

Notice how Paul encouraged them to give.  They were to plan ahead what they should give.  Each person should decide in his heart what to give.  No one should put pressure on them or force them, because this would make them reluctant or grudging givers.  They should be like farmers sowing seeds for a harvest.  The more seed they sowed, the bigger would be their harvest.  They should plant this giving seed with a cheerful heart of faith because God would bring a harvest.  God loves cheerful givers because that is how He gives to us!  “God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all you need, you will abound in every good work.” (2nd Corinthians 9:8)

God supplies the needs of His people through faithful giving.  This brings praise to His Name and a supply of blessing to those who give!  “This service that you perform (generous, cheerful giving) is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.  Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies you confession of the Gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and everyone else.” (2nd Corinthians 9:12-13) Let’s cause an overflow of thanksgiving by giving!

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Abounding Grace!

Scripture reading for November 28th: 2nd Corinthians 6-9

“Remember this:  Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all you need, you will abound in every good work.” 2nd Corinthians 9:6-8

I love this passage of Scripture.  As a farmer who has sowed many fields with seed, I understand the principles of sowing and reaping.  When you sow seed, if you are stingy and sow less than needed, you will have a problem with weeds.  Weeds will come up and choke out the small amount of seed that you placed in the ground.  If you sow plenty of seed, it will produce an abundant crop.  A farmer must be willing to let go of the seed.  Sowing with a bad attitude doesn’t bring blessing.  The seed must be turned loose and let go of into the earth in order to produce.  We can’t hold onto it and expect a crop!  Sowing must be done in faith that a harvest will come.  Our hope is in the seed and the Lord’s grace to provide water and weather.

Our giving to God’s work is the same way.  The money is like seed.  It represents our life energy that we have spent working or investing.  As we give to God the tithe that belongs to Him and offerings, it is like seed sown into the kingdom of God.  We must turn loose of it and let it do it’s work of multiplication.  We give cheerfully and in faith believing that God will faithfully multiply the seed.  He is willing and able to make all grace abound to us!

I like the emphasis on the word “all” in this simple passage.  All Grace” abounds to the cheerful giver.  The giver has “all he needs” in “all things” at “all times”. God wants us to know abundance in our lives.  When we sow, we can expect blessing and sufficiency.  We actually set up a cycle of blessing that is described later in this chapter.  Our giving brings thanksgiving to God from those that are helped.  God gets tickled and gives you more seed to sow again.  This meets the needs of others who again thank God.  God gets tickled again and pours out even more blessing and multiplied seed so you can give even more!  More people are helped and thank God and the cycle goes on!  All grace abounds and you have all you need in all things at all times!  That’s a cycle of abounding grace that all believers should tap into!

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