We each give for different reasons. 1) Some people give out of guilt. They give to God’s work because they would feel bad if they didn’t. 2) Some people give out of greed. They give only to get. They stand on Scriptures such as: ‘Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you’ (Luke 6:38 NIV). The problem with this kind of thinking is that it’s ‘me-centred’, rather than ‘us-centred’. 3) Some people give to get glory. Jesus said, ‘Be careful not to practise your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them, If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven’ (Matthew 6:1 NIVUK). God is not just interested in what we give, but in why we give. He looks beyond the amount we give, and examines the motive behind it. If we give to God out of greed, guilt, or glory, we're giving from the wrong motives and reasons. Jesus said: ‘When you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly’ (vv. 3-4 NKJV). 4) Some people give out of gratitude. These are the people who ask, ‘What shall I return to the Lord for all his goodness to me?’ (Psalm 116:12 NIV), and they give out of gratitude. That’s the kind of giver we should try to be.
Have a read through the four points in today’s reading and think which one tends to best fit why you choose to give. If it’s one of the first three reasons, ask God to change your heart so you’re giving from a place of gratitude instead.
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