Therefore He said: “A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return. 13 So he called ten of his servants, delivered to them ten minas, and said to them, “Do business till I come.’ 14 But his citizens hated him, and sent a delegation after him, saying, “We will not have this man to reign over us.’Luke 19:12-14
Jesus has a masterful way of getting through to our heads and hearts with the use of stories. For His disciples, the Good Teacher uses a parable (a simple story that teaches a deep spiritual truth) to reinforce the importance of kingdom economics. The Master wants His followers to understand that God owns and we are simply His managers. Hear the words that Jesus uses: the nobleman delivered and said to do business till. As you begin the week, are you prepared and ready to manage God’s resources well? The spiritual truth that the Lord owns everything frees you up to live a life without burdens, worries, and fears. So this week the question is not, God will I give to you, but how will I give to you today and this week?
"Get all you can, save all you can and give all you can."—John Wesley
Pray today for a desire to give, serve, and manage God’s gifts well.
Luke 12:21 “So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Do you want to know where your heart is? Follow the money. We use this phrase to refer to corrupt politicians, shady business dealings, and impermissible benefits given to athletes or bribes. We must remember that our approach to money is not just important, it is central to our spiritual lives. Jesus warns us that our heart will follow our treasure. Joyous is the person who has treasure in heaven and is moving toward it, rather than the person whose total treasury is found on earth and is moving away from it. So, what are you treasuring today? Are you rich toward God?
“He is no fool that gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose” –Jim Elliot (killed in Ecuador)
Lord, may I set my eyes upon treasure that is not of this earth, but kept in heaven, and secured for eternity. Father, this week may I live a life rich toward You alone.
2Cor. 8:13 For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened; 14 but by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may supply their lack, that their abundance also may supply your lack—that there may be equality. 15 As it is written, “He who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack.”
God prospers me not to raise my standing of living, but to raise my standard of giving. Suppose you send an important package, wrapped beautifully, and hand it to the UPS delivery man. What would you think if he took it home, opened it up and kept it for himself? After calling the Better Business Bureau, you would say this man does not get it, he is the middleman, the one who gives it to someone else. Oh that we would not be this man! This is the spiritual truth the Lord teaches us in His Word. God abundantly gives to you that you may help those who lack. Do you have enough? Are you ready to give? May the Lord open doors for you to help someone in need today. If you are lacking, may you open up your life for someone to meet that need. Remember, God often meets our needs through other Christ followers.
"Feel for others -- in your pocket." Charles Spurgeon
Lord, if you abundantly supply my needs, I will help those who are burdened. Father, open up my eyes to needs around me that I might be a grace-giver
Deut. 26:1 “And it shall be, when you come into the land which the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, and you possess it and dwell in it, 2 that you shall take some of the first of all the produce of the ground, which you shall bring from your land that the LORD your God is giving you, and put it in a basket and go to the place where the LORD your God chooses to make His name abide.
Are you a person who loves or hates leftovers? Personally, depending on what’s for dinner, I love leftovers. Often I find that some foods actually taste better after they soak, marinate, and amalgamate (especially gumbo; yum yum!). Yet, we are reminded that the Lord does not want our leftovers. Instead, He desires our firsts. Why the first? Giving, serving, and seeking the Lord first (called the first fruits in the Old Testament) sets your priorities, proves your trust, tests your faith, and displays your gratitude. Today will you give the Lord your best? Thankfully we will not eat leftovers in heaven, and we do not worship a leftover Savior!
Never be afraid of giving up your best, and God will give you His better. ~~James Hinton~~
Lord, help me give my best to You today and with the works of my hands help me give back from the firsts, not the leftovers.
So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. 2 Cor. 9:7
Here we see something that God loves: those who give with cheer. The Greek word that Paul uses is ἱλαρὸν (hilaron) and is used once in the entire New Testament in this form. We get our English word “hilarious” from the same root. Said another way, God loves a “hilarious” giver (one who is boisterously joyful). Oh today that you would be a hilariously, cheerful giver unto the Lord that the world might see your generosity and glorify your Father in heaven.
"If thou bear the cross cheerfully, it will bear thee."—Thomas Kempis
"Charity sees the need, not the cause." – Author Unknown
Lord, give me a cheerful attitude today as I give for kingdom work and kingdom advancement.