There’s a conflict between God’s economy and the world’s. The world’s economy says, “You work hard and whatever you earn is yours, so keep it.” When we listen to this perspective, we “white-knuckle” our stuff. We hold on to it fearing what we’ve worked so hard to get will slip away from us. God’s economy says, “If we give it away, we’ll be blessed.” That’s a totally different perspective—holding vs. giving.
White knucklers wonder why they aren’t blessed. It’s because their hand is so tightly wound around their stuff that God can’t put anything in there.
Read Proverbs 11:24–25.
- Describe the contrast between one who gives and one who withholds.
- Which person is more blessed? Why?
- How can a generous person prosper?
Read 1 Timothy 6:17–19.
- Where should we be rich?
- What is the outcome of letting go of our stuff?
Look at the Numbers
How important is giving to God? Here’s a clue. There are approximately 500 verses in the Bible that talk about faith. There are approximately 500 verses in the Bible on prayer. We know how important both prayer and faith are, right? There are 2,000 verses in the Bible that have something to do with money and possessions. God spends a lot of time helping us understand letting go and giving away.
Basically, as we read His Word, He’s telling us that we can keep earthly treasures for the moment and we may even derive some temporary pleasure from them. However, if we choose to give them away—stop white knuckling—we have the opportunity to enjoy eternal treasure that cannot be taken away from us, ever.
Read Matthew 6:21.
- How important are money, possessions and your attitude toward them and your attitude toward giving?
- Where do we get hung up?
Faith and Trust
Psalm 50:10 tells us, “For every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.” The psalmist lyrically lets us know that God doesn’t need our money. He is the Creator of the Universe.
We don’t need to give to God because God needs it. We need to let go of our stuff because we don’t need it. Giving shows God we don’t need it and it shows God that we trust Him to provide when we put Him first and give Him our best. Giving is both a heart issue and a faith issue. Jim Elliott, one of five missionaries who died while serving the Auca Indians wrote, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
Read Luke 21:1–4.
- How does this widow give? How do the wealthy give?
- What is each one’s perspective and which one showed a heart and faith that trusted God?
Generosity is the antidote to greed and it is a sure fire way to plant our heart squarely into the things that God is passionate about. The Bible is clear that our heart and our money are connected . . . one follows the other. Could it be that our hearts aren’t as connected to the things God cares about because we are not putting our treasure there?
- In what ways is God calling you to be generous? How are you responding?
 Chip Ingram, Good to Great in God’s Eyes: 10 Practices Great Christians Have in Common, Grand Rapids, Baker Books, 20007, 22
- »The Invitation, December 26-30, 2011
- »One More Thing . . ., December 19-23, 2011
- »He is the Healer
- »I’ve Got It Under Control
- »Parenting is a Verb—Choosing to be a Great Parent
- »Being a Great Mate
- »Lifelong Partners: Choosing Wisely
- »Locking Arms
- »Putting in the Hard Work
- Oldest First
- Newest First
- Most Popular
We’re sorry! This conversation is closed. You can join in on the latest conversation here.