For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.
(2 Corinthians 8:9 ESV)
If I had to make a list of topics that people look forward to talking about at church, money would not likely be on it. In fact for some money is a tough topic to think about. In many places money is addressed only when it is an issue, if even then. We don’t typically talk about money in our family unless we are running out of it and we only talk about it in our churches when we need more of it. Take a step back for a moment though to hear what God has to say when it comes to what giving should look like. The example God uses to explain how we are to give is his son. We know what God means when he says give by looking at his son.
I believe this is what makes reflecting on giving so hard for many of us. As I look in the mirror and reflect on how I give of my time, money, skills, and life to God, and then reflect on what God gave for me, it can be discouraging. How can what seemingly little I can give compare to what God has given me in Jesus? But we read this in scripture: I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine. (2 Corinthians 8:8 ESV). Scripture gives us this reminder, that God’s calling is that we give of all we have as an act of worship, not of duty. God is not looking for people who just fulfill a duty, but who joyfully offer their lives, time, skills, and money because of the overwhelming gift that God offered to us.
1. How might you give differently so that it becomes an act of joyful worship?
2. What challenges you in these verses from 2 Corinthians?