I can remember before becoming a father I used to see parents with kids in restaurants and stores having melt downs and I would think, “When I am a parent I will never__________.” Since I have become a parent I have realized how stupid and ignorant I was to the craziness and struggle that can be parenting but it was because my perspective wasn’t one of real experience. Our perspectives matter because they help inform our attitudes, opinions, and actions. On Sunday we wrapped up our “Be Rich” series in which we studied 1 Timothy 6:17-19 and we explored the biblical perspective of generosity.
In 1 Timothy 6:18 it says, “Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.” “Being Rich” as a Christ follower is about an attitude and heart change not about our wealth or status. When we realize that as followers of Jesus we are rich because of His grace, we can begin to live more generously and be rich in good deeds.
In Matthew 6:24, Jesus said, “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” Jesus understood that money (and other things) have the power to enslave us and take our focus and devotion off of Him and on to money, power, success, etc…When we begin to follow Jesus it begins to change our perspective. It changes our relationships, our schedules, and even our finances.
In 2 Corinthians 9:6-8, Paul taught us this truth, “Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” We all want to make a small investment and get a huge reward but the reality is that what we “sow” or invest is what we will receive back but still in the long run we could out on top because we have gift of salvation and the promise of heaven. God has gifted us for our present to help draw people to Him and a better future.
I recently was playing with my son Gideon a game were we just throw small plastic balls at each other , like the ones you find in a ball pit. We love to play like this but I noticed two things while we were playing, the first was Gideon got so focused on grabbing as many balls as he could that he kept dropping more of them and secondly his hands were too full for him to be able to throw balls back at me, the lesson? You don’t get to keep all of what you have in this life and if you try to you will lose it one way or another and if you hold things too closely you stop having fun. So find ways to start “throwing some balls” and live generously with your time, talent, and treasure because its all His anyways.