Monday, December 12, 2011

Just give it away....

Stuff binds us, complicates our lives, and creates cardboard idols. Although I've never considered myself a packrat (by most standards), my husband is an extreme minimalist. You know the advice, "If you haven't used it in a year (or six months), toss it,"? Well, my husband takes that quite literally. Doesn't matter if it was my first gift to him, doesn't matter if it's Christmas decorations or souvenirs from Europe, if we haven't looked at it or used it recently, it's better off in someone else's hands.

And I'm learning... that keeping something for later use, when someone can definitely use it now, is just selfishness.

Recently, we've taken some clothes to Christian Associates and given away some toys, which is all well and good, but the question I keep seeing in front of me is this: how hard was that? What kind of sacrifice is giving away that which doesn't matter to you?

A real heart of giving will give even when it hurts, even when we feel the loss of giving it away.

Francis Chan puts it bluntly. "LUKEWARM PEOPLE give money to charity and to the church... as long as it doesn't impinge on their standard of living. If they have a little extra and it is easy and safe to give, they do so. After all, God loves a cheerful giver, right?
"King David replied to Araunah, 'No, I insist on paying the full price. I will not take for the Lord what is yours, or sacrifice a burnt offering that costs me nothing" (I Chron. 21:24)
"As he looked up, Jesus saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. 'I tell you the truth.' he said, 'this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on'" (Luke 21:1-4). [Crazy Love 69].

So, the next time you have an opportunity to give (don't wait to hear God's thunder from heaven to do so), give with a cheerful heart, and give away something special to you that will in turn bless someone else.

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