One Ministry, One Church, One Message Worldwide
The world places a high value on money; because of this, we can find ourselves in an endless pursuit of “prosperity.” However, the world only sees prosperity from a financial point of view instead of an all-encompassing biblical point of view. To prosper is not only to be financially successful, but also to flourish physically and succeed in everything we do. Achieving this goal may involve something we wouldn’t expect—giving.
The key to success, both in our finances and in all other areas of our lives, is not only to give, but to do so generously and enthusiastically. God promises that giving financially with the right motives will always come back to us as a blessing. “Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back” (Luke 6:38, NLT). Money is simply a tool to bless others; when we release our tight grip on it, God will honor our generosity.
We might be afraid to give because we’ve learned to see it as a loss instead of as a gain. This is wrong-thinking. Studying the Word of God and thinking on it dissolves any fear we may have in this area, and turns it into faith that what He says will come to pass. “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus”(Philippians 4:19). When we open our wallets to help others, God will always see to it that we don’t come up short.
Fear of giving stems from doubt as to whether God’s Word is really true, and whether it applies specifically to us. It is, and it does. We can confidently believe in what God says, because He always tells us the truth. “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?” (Numbers 23:19). No matter what we see around us, His Word regarding money won’t change.
One of the biggest obstacles that can stand in our way is the belief that giving generously will hurt our own finances. When Paul was teaching the Corinthians about giving, he used the churches in Macedonia as an example to encourage them. The Macedonians were financially poor, yet their joy at hearing God’s Word caused them to give abundantly. “You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich…Give in proportion to what you have. Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have” (2 Corinthians 8:9, 11, 12, NLT). God is well able to cause financial increase in the life of a cheerful giver.
Our motivation to chase after wealth may stem from a fear of poverty. However, poverty isn’t God’s will. He loves us, and wants to bless us financially. “The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed” (Proverbs 11:25, NLT). Accepting His love and allowing it to flow through us and outward in the form of financial blessings to others allows Him to do just that.