Praise the Lord Sunday – Include God in Your Giving

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭3:5‬ ‭NIV‬‬

It’s a glorious Sunday and I hope you are enjoying your day!  Our day started nice with Church, a fellowship breakfast and Sunday School.  Today, our minister’s sermon was about being called into discipleship.  Have you ever thought about what you’d be able to give up?  Jesus chooses ordinary people like us to be his disciples every day. He doesn’t do background checks, or require extensive education.  Everyone has a role, or probably several roles.  Isn’t it wonderful!

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As Christian disciples it is wonderful to be able to help others.  We enjoy it so much that we try to help others everywhere we go.  Similarly, we help others without checking credentials and on faith.  We don’t have to be rich to help others, but sometimes others might see us that way or take advantage of our generosity.  Let God lead you in your giving.

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Recently an acquaintance of mine cried to me about her need for money for her family.  She claimed they had sold many of their belongings to buy food, and were skipping meals because they lacked food.  Then, the story escalated into how she had no reason to live.  I hear this story regularly from her.  My heart is not hard, but some things just don’t add up.  First, her hair and nails are polished to perfection.  She is clothed in designer clothes.  She drives expensive vehicles and travels almost every weekend.  On top of that, no one at her house works.  Knowing she was asking for money, I suggested she get a job and recommended churches and other places that would give her family food.  That is when I heard a click.

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The good news is that Romans 8:28  tells us “that in all things God works for the good of those who love him . . . [and] . . .who have been called according to his purpose.”  I say the good news, because I felt a little guilty and wondered should I have done more.  I mean, whom am I to judge.  Then, God opened my eyes this morning.  Right there on Instagram she was decked out in some of the finest clothes and traveling two states away.  There is no point in telling the remainder of the story.

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We all have financial choices.  Mine are not always the best and we are certainly not rich.  However, when I stand before God I want to be able to say that I worked hard and helped others as much as possible.  There is nothing wrong with asking for help, but taking advantage of others is wrong.  It’s not a wrong we should punish.  We just need to be aware that everyone is not honest.

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God’s word tells us that working is good.  Do you remember the story about the Ant and the Grasshopper (Aesop’s Fables, numbered 373 in the Perry Index)?  The ant worked all summer and stored up for the winter, while the grasshopper played all day.  Proverbs 6:6 tells us to consider the ant’s ways to be wise.  Similarly, Joseph, after being sold by his jealous brothers and undergoing many trials, helped the Pharoah by storing up a percentage of the crops for the years of famine (Genesis 37-45).  Working and saving is good advice that we all need to work on.  Then, we should remember not to compare ourselves.  Remember to help your family, the elderly and the disadvantaged.  Giving and helping others is honorable and good. Don’t judge others, but always consult God in your financial decisions and giving.  Then, after you have given to someone, walk away.  It’s theirs to use however they please from that moment on.

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God bless you.