The concept of giving is something we can either joyfully embrace or fearfully shy away from. The world knows about taking, not giving, and therefore doesn’t understand how giving generously empowers the giver. Giving isn’t about money, but about trust. When we trust what God says in this area, we can expect grace from the one who enables us to give.
During His ministry, Jesus had just as much to do with money as with more spiritual things. When He saw the widow put two mites into the treasury, which was all the money she had, He remarked on her generosity. Compared to the wealthy people who cast in greater amounts of money from their excess, the woman’s giving was an act of trust in God.
The grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia empowered them to freely give, despite being poor in material wealth. The joy they felt at hearing the Word preached gave them the power to give beyond their physical means. They were generous, despite their afflictions and deep poverty.
Grace-based giving is purposeful and deliberate; it plans ahead, and isn’t just an afterthought. Paul, who was known as the apostle of grace, taught proportional giving. He advised the churches at Galatia and Corinth to set aside money in advance, as God had prospered each person. God prospers us to give, so that we never have to be afraid of giving what we don’t have.
Paul also taught the people not to consume all their financial resources, but to save some to give to others. God will multiply the financial seed that we sow into others’ lives, and increase the fruits of our righteousness. What we give—not what we spend on ourselves—will be multiplied.
We can never out-give God, who set the example for us when He gave us His own Son. We find success when we follow His lead. There’s no need to be afraid to give.
God, You blessed each of us generously so that we, in turn, can bless others. You empower us with financial seed so that we can sow some of that seed into others’ lives. Thank You for the abundance You give us. In Jesus’ name, amen.
2 Corinthians 8:1-3
1 Corinthians 16:2
2 Corinthians 9:6, 10