Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Giving To Others

Working in downtown Jackson, I get to see things that I probably wouldn't normally see living out in the county. Last night as I was driving back for our 10pm webcast, I drove past a gas station that was closed. There was a homeless man digging in the trash cans set next to the gas pumps. At first I thought he was an employee closing up for the evening. But as I looked closer, I realized what he was doing--trying his best to find any scrap of food to eat or maybe even a dropped coin or two. The Holy Spirit convicted me: "Give that man some money".

Someone has said, "Show me how a person spends his money and I'll tell you what his relationship with God is like." How true do you really think that is?

When Paul talked about giving in the Bible, he begins by sharing with the Corinthians how the Macedonian Christians were sending money they really didn't have to spare. Philippi, Thessalonica, and Berea were all cities in Macedonia where the churches were suffering greatly because of persecution from the Jews. And how were the believers in Macedonia enduring it all? 2 Corinthians 8:1-2 says, "Now, brethren, we wish to make known to you the grace of God which has been given in the churches of Macedonia, that in a great ordeal of affliction their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed in the wealth of their liberality."

The suffering they were experiencing, their poverty, filled them with joy. So much so that when they heard about the collection Paul was taking up, they had to help. They begged to help!

What about you and me? Do we find great joy in giving generously to the work of God? Has the Lord laid it upon your heart to share your resources to help someone else? What will you and I do with what we've been given?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I had the same thing happen to me several months ago. I work in Madison, and I went to lunch one day at the Back Yard Burgers by Wal-Mart. When I pulled in the side road I saw a man standing there, with a dog, and it was obvious he was either homeless, or really down on his luck. There was an older truck parked near him, and I assumed it was his. When I pulled in, I immediately felt conviction from the Holy Spirit to give this man some cash. What is strange is I usually don't ever carry cash, I always use my debit card, but that day I happened to have about $10.00. I fought the conviction, with all the usual excuses, such as you don't know what he'll really use the money for, etc. But I couldn't escape the Holy Spirit! When I pulled out, I made my way over to him and gave him the money I had left. When I drove away, I knew I had done what the Holy Spirit had told me to do. I had a peace about it. When the Holy Spirit is telling you to do something, there is no denying it!