You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.” And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. (2 Corinthians 9:7-8)
Jesus is going through every village and city in Galilee, preaching the Kingdom and healing everywhere He goes. The 12 disciples are with Him, as well as women He’d healed along the way, who’re supporting them financially out of love and gratitude for Him. A crowd gathers, as usual, so Jesus begins teaching them through parables of a sower sowing seed, and a lamp that can’t be covered. The main point is simple: those who do well with what they’ve been given are given more, while those who aren’t faithful have it taken from them. More specifically, people who hear and receive the Word, and bear fruit by living it out, are given greater understanding; those who don’t lose what little understanding they had.
We are given a ton in Christ! We’ve been blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places (Ephesians 1:3), His Word, spiritual gifts and talents (1 Peter 4:10), money, resources, etc. Jesus is teaching His people that, when they’re fruitful with what they have, they’ll be given more! Living this way is called having an abundance mindset. Someone with an abundance mindset knows that God has unlimited riches that He promises to give us, and therefore doesn’t hesitate to give liberally and trust God to provide for them, even when they’re in need. The opposite is a scarcity mindset, in which someone lives in fear of lack or need, and is therefore stingy and reluctant to give. And this goes for physical blessings such as wealth, as well as spiritual blessings like the gifts we’ve been given. The key to living in abundance, even when you have little, is to stand on the promise of Philippians 4:19, “And my God shall supply your every need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.“ We actually see Jesus living this out in the account I mentioned at the beginning: as He faithfully preaches and fulfills His ministry, God moves certain women to give and financially support Him from their own pockets out of love and gratitude for their healing! Jesus focused on being fruitful and faithful, and the Father made sure He was taken care of.
As citizens of the Kingdom who have Jesus as our Foundation, we give cheerfully and generously because we trust that, as we’re fruitful with what we’ve been given, our Father will provide an abundance to not only satisfy our needs, but allow us to give even more! We’re entrusted with blessings and called to be good stewards of them, trusting that we’ll lack no good thing. Whether it’s wealth or understanding, any gift from God is meant to be freely given in faith, not hoarded in fear. This is what it means to “seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness“, trusting that “all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33)
- Take inventory of the various blessings and resources you have in Christ, spiritual or physical, and pray for wisdom and guidance in how you can generously bless others out of love for Him today. Trust that He will supply your every need as you strive to be a faithful steward and servant! Just go and follow Christ, living with open hands that freely give and receive, and He’ll take care of the rest.
Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure you use, it will be given back to you. (Luke 6:38)