2 Corinthians 8:1-4 The Message
8 1-4 Now, friends, I want to report on the surprising and generous ways in which God is working in the churches in Macedonia province. Fierce troubles came down on the people of those churches, pushing them to the very limit. The trial exposed their true colors: They were incredibly happy, though desperately poor. The pressure triggered something totally unexpected: an outpouring of pure and generous gifts. I was there and saw it for myself. They gave offerings of whatever they could—far more than they could afford!—pleading for the privilege of helping out in the relief of poor Christians.
Do you make offerings in time or money to others/organizations?
What is your offering and to whom?
Are we offering our best and greatest amount possible or are we with-holding our gifts?
I think about these questions from time to time. I got a wide-eyed stare from a nail salon cashier when I left a larger than 20% tip for a girl that painstakingly painted my nails with a gel manicure this week. This young lady drives 30 minutes to work, lives with her family (she’s young), and attends the community college as an ESOL student. She moved here from Columbia and is learning the English language so that she can go to school to become a dental hygienist. I know all this because I talked with Karen instead of watching the TV on the wall or being quiet like most of the other ladies in the salon. Except the older grouchy lady who complained at her nail tech for not making her French manicure just right…that’s another story!
Karen deserved a big tip in my opinion. I’m blessed to be a blessing. I can afford to leave a bit tip so I did. I work two jobs and she kind of does too—student and nail tech for her. Preschool teacher and speech therapist for me. My business is booming (in my eyes), and I have a little extra to give. I have plenty for my own pleasure too. I’m still seeking ways to serve God with my gifts. Some will go to our home church too. Offerings are important. Be generous today.
You are the Gift Giver. Forgive me when I forget that it ALL belongs to You ultimately. Give me a heart for giving. Give me time and money to give to others. Grant me discernment in my spending. Love you Lord!