“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.”—2 Corinthians 9:8
A couple weeks ago, as I sat in a drive-thru car line, a man tapped on my window. He was middle aged, fully dressed, and hungry. He asked if I could “afford” to buy him some food. Honestly, I grimaced. For a moment I even considered declining. Instead, I apprehensively agreed.
As Christians, we should welcome opportunities to be generous because we ourselves know what it means to be given the most gracious gift of all. God, in His incomprehensible generosity offered His Son, Jesus, up to sin and death so we could have life. When we give our hearts over to this gospel, we cannot overlook the expectation of its fruit in our lives.
Why then is it so difficult, at times, for us to be generous and merciful? Frankly, the answer is our disbelief. Our reluctance to sacrifice for others perhaps reveals in us skepticism of God’s provision. As we grip with clenched fists our time, finances, possessions, and energy, and turn away from people in need, we miss out on opportunities for God to prove Himself faithful. We find ourselves trying to hold onto our lives, all the while missing out on the freedom Jesus intended for us.
Isaiah 50:7 says, “For the Lord God will help me . . . Therefore I have set My face like a flint, and I know that I will not be ashamed.” It shows us that even as Jesus bore the cross and made the ultimate sacrifice, His trust was in God and His sovereign hand. In Scripture, God offers promise after promise of His faithfulness, preservation, nearness, and strength. Jesus never doubted that He would be honored for His sacrifice because He knew God’s promises. When we trust that the Lord has provided good works for us to do, and He is gracious to soften our hearts and provide for our needs, we are able to give out of His provision freely. The only thing God needs to accomplish His work is a willing heart.
As I drove through the car line, I remembered 2 Corinthians 9:7, “For God loves a cheerful giver.” Despite myself, God gave me grace for this moment and I was able to provide a meal for a man who was hungry. I realized in that moment that everything we have isn’t really ours at all; it’s God’s grace and provision.
DIG: Do you know what the Bible says about sacrifice and God’s provision? Study and commit to memorize verses about this.
DISCOVER: When was the last time you gave something (food, money, time) to someone in need? What did that experience teach you? How did you see God provide?
DISPLAY: Look for opportunities in your daily life to give to others who are in need. It can be as simple as giving out water bottles to the homeless or buying another person’s meal.
Republished with permission from Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale.