"for you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor"
[2 corinthians 8:9]
"the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘it is more blessed to give than to receive.’"
"whoever gathered much had nothing left over,
and whoever gathered little had no lack"
[2 corinthians 8:15]
"one gives freely, yet grows all the richer,
another withholds what he should give, and suffers only want.
whoever brings blessing will be enriched,
and one who waters will himself be watered."
"whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly,
and whoever sows bountifully will reap bountifully"
[2 corinthians 9:6]
God has really been challenging me in the area of giving and pointing out my selfishness of recent. i have realized that i have a hoarding mentality when it comes to my time, my energy and my money, and i want to give the best of it, and really almost all of it, exclusively to myself and my family.
yet Christ, for my sake, decided to become poor, though he was rich. and He himself said that i am more blessed when i give to others than when i receive from them. do i really believe this? do you? think about it this way... do you forward to other people's birthdays or your own? do you want to give others gifts and attention, or receive it for yourself? do you look forward more to going over to someone's house for dinner, or hosting them at your house?
paradoxically, not only is it more blessed to give than receive, but when we hoard our blessings, we wont be building them up, they will actually start to diminish. but the one who generously, freely, joyfully gives away their blessings, that is the person, the bible says, who will continue to grow all the more rich.
the good news is that we don't need to force ourselves into this kind of generosity. it will come naturally as we learn more about God's lavish generosity towards us, and as His spirit works inside us.
praise God :)