One of the greatest challenges for all of us is the tension between immediate gratification and deferred gratification. Over the past few generations there has been a substantial shift from a mindset of deferred gratification to a near-obsession with immediate gratification.
Do you believe that God is powerful enough, wise enough, and loving enough to take care of you without your help? When you can finally and fully trust God for your care and provision, you will never again need to worry about giving too much away during your lifetime.
We can be generous in how we give without being generous in how we live. Conversely, a person who lives generously always gives generously. In other words, we may be willing to be extremely generous in giving what we want to give when and where we want to give it. But with what we don’t want to give, we can find ourselves being selfish and tight-fisted.
As you seek to personally embrace and consistently apply the concept of biblical stewardship in your own life, you might be surprised to hear that the term “generous giving” should create some uneasiness in you. Learn why!
One of the most compelling disincentives to people’s giving is a nagging sense of loss from what they give away. Many feel that if they give, they will become “poorer” in the same proportion as the recipient of their gift becomes “richer.” In other words, “Someone else’s gain is at my expense.”
Your degree of generosity is not measured by how much you give, it is measured by how much you have left over after you give. This definition should challenge all of us to reassess our current level of giving to determine if we should even be thinking of ourselves as big givers.
One of the most common fears of giving is this, “If I get really radical in my giving, what I currently have in my barns and vats could be greatly diminished. Consequently, I may find them being only half-full or worse yet, entirely empty because I gave too much away.”
This article does not refer to the needy who have a material shortfall; it refers to the needy who have a material surplus. Those who have a shortfall need to receive, but equally critical, those who have a surplus need to give. Both are genuinely needy, but in different ways.
When abundant provisions appear, they can create a barrier that limits our ability to trust God more fully. I have seen this in my own life and the lives of many others. The more we possess, the more likely we are to trust Him less. In other words, the more He provides, the less we trust Him to provide. Odd phenomenon, isn’t it?
If you want to experience out-of-control giving, (1) embrace a bigger vision, (2) totally surrender to the Lord, (3) listen to the Holy Spirit, and (4) make your giving a joyous experience. Then, look out!