Sacrificial giving is spontaneous, and doesn’t always add up according to some formula. But it is always fun and fulfilling.
It is the special collection after church for a project that is helping a widow. Baskets have been placed by the door for contributions. You approach them, open your wallet, and you have a 10, a 5, a few ones, and also a 100 dollar bill in your wallet.
The 100 dollars is for Sunday brunch at your family’s favorite restaurant. So you grab a few ones, but then pause. Something is convincing you to give more. To give beyond your ability.
You pull out the 10, the 5 and also the 100 dollar bill. You humbly and happily fold these inside the one dollar bills, and place the gift in the basket. Oh, that feels good! Like Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than receive” (Acts 20:35).
What about brunch? The kids won’t be happy! You explain all this as you drive your family home. For leftovers.
I can think of 5 spiritually positive and powerful outcomes in this sacrificial giving:
- You took a risk of faith and didn’t play it safe. You gave away your meal money and you didn’t starve because God gave you a supply like he did for the widow in Zarephath (1 Kings 17).
- You gave up something important to you, for something important to someone else, and fulfilled the golden rule of Jesus to love others like yourself. Like the boy whose fish and bread morsels fed 5,000 (Mark 6).
- You taught your family about God, faith, and making a difference in this world (Luke 6:30,31).
- You learned to loosen your grip of greed and selfishness and me-first mentality. It’s a freedom and feels good (Luke 19:8).
- You emptied your wallet for God to fill up even more. He doesn’t promise to fill shopping carts or wallets that are full, but empty. So empty them, and give God space to work (Luke 1:52,53).
Yes, that means risky faith. Yes, that means you need to stop playing it safe, without a backup plan. Let me ask you this: what was God’s backup plan for sending his Son to save you? Did the Father back out? Did the Son hesitate or go into hiding? No holding back. No easier option. God gave the ultimate sacrifice for you.
So believe in him. Repent for playing it safe and not taking risks. Empty your wallet. Put less faith in formulas and human accounting. Live and love beyond your means in sacrificial giving
PRAYER: Dear Jesus, you said that it is more blessed to give than to receive, and proved it by giving yourself into death so that I live—forgiven and free. Fill my faith with your promises, so that I can give more, experiencing the joy of sacrificial giving. Amen.
FURTHER MEDITATION: Review the 5 powerful and positive spiritual outcomes listed above. Say a prayer of thanks and praise for any of them you have experienced recently. Read a few of the Bible references that attract your attention and pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal a truth for you today.