Generosity Triggers God’s Blessing
"Use your hands for good hard work, and then give generously to others in need." (Ephesians 4:28 NLT)
God wants you to use your skills to have money to share - with people who can't work or who are poor for whatever reason. Ephesians 4:28 says, "Use your hands for good hard work, and then give generously to others in need" (NLT).
At some point, you have to decide that enough is enough. How do you know when enough is enough? Somebody asked Howard Hughes, "How much do you need?" and he said, "Just a little bit more." That's called materialism. Materialism is when you haven't learned to live within your income. You always have to have a little bit more. Isn't it interesting how some people are barely surviving on an income they once dreamed of having? God says at some point you have to say, "I've got enough."
Is that when you should stop working? No. You keep working, but you're now making it to give away and share with other people.
I had to come to this decision when "The Purpose Driven Life" became the best selling book in the world for three years. That brought in tens of millions of dollars. Kay and I could have retired and bought an island in the Pacific and had people serving us drinks with little umbrellas in them. I could have spent the rest of my life working on my tan. But is that the purpose of life? No, it's not.
So what did I do? I kept working. Why? I'm not working to make money for myself. In fact, I said, "Lord, what do you want me to do with all this money? It's your money, not mine. God said, "Go read your book." So I did, and I only had to go to the first line of the book to get what he meant: "It's not about you."
When you write a book and the first line is, "It's not about you," and it makes tens of millions of dollars, you've got to figure, it's not for you! So we spent the next four years having a lot of fun giving all that money away all around the world. Why did we do it? Because God gave us the skills to have money so we could share it with others.
Give freely and spontaneously; don't have a stingy heart. The way you handle the money that comes in because of your abilities triggers a response from God.
How many of you would like God's blessing in everything you do? Of course we all would. The trigger that causes God's blessing is generosity. Why? Because God is generous, and he wants you to learn to be like him. You're never going to be like Jesus Christ unless you learn generosity and stop being stingy.
God's given you the ability to honor him, to serve others, to make a living, to be an example, to have money to pass on to others. And I've learned from personal experience that the more generous you are, the more God blesses your life.
Talk It Over
No matter how much or how little money you have, what is it in your life that God wants you to use to bless others?
- What do you need to change about the way you give to others so that you are more like Jesus?