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Friday
Apr152016

THE JOY OF GIVING

TIM McPHERSON
Dean for Advancement
 
Who has most deeply touched your life, or influenced your family, as a giver?

 
As we think about being Christ’s joyful disciples in every area of our lives, we must consider how we follow Jesus with “our” possessions. For the past two months, we have begun constructing our own “Philanthropic Autobiography” through early childhood memories, such as:
 
What is your earliest memory of giving or receiving? Did your family talk about money in your home? What did you learn from your family about giving and volunteering?
 
Today’s question is, “Who has most deeply touched your life, or influenced your family as a giver? What makes this mentor memorable?”
 
We’ve known them, haven’t we? Heroes of generosity, seemingly unbound by financial anxiety or greed. People who exude joy, even in sacrificial giving. People who think of others first, and whose faith fills in the rest. People who give discreetly, not desiring acclamation. People who give as though they were ministering to God himself. These refreshing examples are placed in our lives by God—yes, to help in times of need, but also to further the cause of Christ and to light the pathway of true discipleship.
 
Perhaps we would find further inspiration in the book of Matthew, where we encounter some of the Kingdom principles by which these faithful examples live:
 
  • “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 25:40 NIV)
  • “Everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.” (Matthew 19:29 NIV)
  • “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:21 NIV)
  • “Your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” (Matthew 6:4 NIV)
  • “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:31-33 NIV)
Whose lives will be touched as we put these Kingdom principles into action?
 

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