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What’s Mine is Yours

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Gwen Smith

March 28, 2013

Devotions, Giving, Worship

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Princess Kennedy

“What’s yours is mine, and what’s mine is mine.” My husband Brad and I used to joke that this was the unspoken motto of our kids when they were little. Toddlers have no qualms about grabbing a toy, snack, or any random item of interest from other people or pets. It’s rare to see a child share her cherished possessions generously.

It can be hard for you and me to share too. Today’s media bombards us with marketing campaigns that tell us we are the center of the universe. “You, you, you, you, you!” Time and time again we hear that this life is all about us. The more we have, the happier we’ll be. The bigger that bank account, the more blessed the life. I sincerely hope that none of us actually buy these lies. They’re dangerous deceptions.

We all have a sharing problem to some degree, don’t we? Sometimes we don’t want to share our time or our space. Sometimes we don’t want to share our loved ones or our gifts. Sometimes we don’t want to share our resources. Sometimes we just want to be left to ourselves and don’t want to share anything!

God calls each of us to share. The early New Testament church shows us that generous living honors God and blesses others. In Acts 4:32-37; we see an amazing snapshot of generous giving in the early church. The believers were one in heart and mind. They were supernaturally unified to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and you could not find a needy person among them. What a model!

Giving wasn’t political. It wasn’t mandatory. It wasn’t done begrudgingly.

…They shared everything they had. (Acts 4:32)

The disciples, each according to his ability, decided to provide help for the brothers living in Judea. This they did, sending their gift to the elders by Barnabas and Saul. (Acts 11:29-30)

But just as you excel in everything – in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us – see that you also excel in this grace of giving…For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have. (I Corinthians 8:7,12)

The resources of the believers were God’s, and they knew it. They placed what they had before the leaders in selfless acts of worship…for the glory of God and the provision of others. This principle is very important, but it’s also very counter-cultural.

The Bible clearly reveals that true life, a blessed life, an abundant life, a purposed life, is, in fact, all about God. What we have, have given birth to, or hold onto is really not our own.  It’s just on loan to us for a breath of a moment by our more-than-generous Creator. Each day brings us new opportunities to be good stewards.

Let’s face it; it’s just not always easy or natural to be generous. Perhaps we have been taken advantage of or we’ve been hurt by another’s deception. There are risks to giving.

The generous giving of the early church blessed the lives of their people. When we share what we have, God is honored and needs are met. The risks are worth taking.

I’m not suggesting a Robin Hood philosophy of “take from the rich and give to the poor.” And I don’t believe in the politics of communism or socialism. This principle of generous giving is Biblical. It’s an act of worship to God. It matters to God, and it should matter to us.

We need to reject the toddler mentality of “what’s mine is mine.” God loves a cheerful giver. We are blessed to give. Tell God today: “Lord, what’s mine is Yours! Use it for Your glory!

Dear Lord, thank You for this reminder from Your Word. You are amazingly lavish in Your love for me, and You have given me so much. All I have is Yours. Please help me to excel in the grace and worship of giving. Open my eyes to opportunities to bless others for Your glory. In Jesus’s Name, Amen

RESPONSE TIME: Got a story, prayer need, challenge or fresh thought about giving? Leave a comment below.

Thanks for doing life with me!

Gwen

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About Gwen Smith


Gwen Smith

I am an unashamed, imperfect worshiper of Jesus Christ. I cling to His goodness to cover my mess and purpose my days to live out the hope of the Gospel. It is my joy and passion to inspire women to live fully in grace and truth. I write books, devotions and songs. I speak. I sing. I worship. I post, pin and tweet. I am intensely in love with the Word of God and believe, wholeheartedly, that the Bible is divinely inspired truth.

 
  • Mary

    Loving is Giving,and Giving is living.

    • http://www.gwensmith.net/ Gwen Smith

      Amen. Love that.

  • Michelle

    Growing up we were poor. My parents gave not only what little money we had but also of their time. As an adult that left a bad taste in my mouth. Not so much the time but the money so it was one of the reasons I didn’t go to church. I thought all they asked for was money. Over 10yrs ago my daughter got me to try another church. Needless to say it was a good fit—the pastor NEVER asked for money!! He just said here we give like they used to with giving boxes in the back of the church. Not equal giving but equal sacrifice. That hit a cord and made sense. 3 weeks we went to church the kids and I on that 3rd Sunday I gave $35. No it’s not a lot but at the time we were living paycheck to paycheck. I knew my husband would be angry giving to some church so I didn’t tell him. I got my husband to start going to church on the 4th week. About a month after we all started going to church my husband came home from work one day and said that the owner of the company called him in to his office. He told my husband, Larry that he messed up and owed him some money from his quarterly bonus. Larry thinking it can’t be much (we always new within a hundred dollars how much was coming in) said no worries. His boss said it was too much to give at one time so he had to break it up over several months…..it was $10,000!!!! Larry was shocked! Me, I just started to cry when he told me this because I thought back to what our pastor said. I confessed to Larry about the giving and told him we are going to do the 10% that church suggested from now on. He agreed. Now as a disclaimer—-No every week or every time we give we have not rec’d such a large sum of money!!! But when we do give regularly like we are supposed to its amazing how God blesses us in every area of our lives!! I am continually surprised of how much God watches over us!

    • http://www.gwensmith.net/ Gwen Smith

      This is a great story. Thanks so much for sharing! I’m so warmed by the way the LORD has brought you to the richness of giving… in such a personal and God-is-awesome kind of way. :)

  • Diane

    I am most selfish with my time, the one thing I have most of, and yet I feel I have no “me” time…it is spent listening to and doing for others who need me. I don’t resent that, but I do need alone time with Jesus to reflect and refresh my soul.

    • http://www.gwensmith.net/ Gwen Smith

      I can relate… and yes, we surely need time with Jesus. Thanks for sharing.

  • Daniela

    I’m looking for more income (i’m an artist) and I pray that I’ll have the job where I can give back a lot to those in need at that time. To have this as a purpose or a goal (to be able to give back) is inspired by the verse Ephesians 4:28
    Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.
    Normally we want an income to be able to pay the bills and look after our own needs, but to get a job to look after other people’s needs is a way that you trust God that your needs will automatically be accounted for already :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/peggy.kuster Peggy Jo Kuster

    I used to make about $120,000 a year but wasn’t tithing even though I knew I should. I bought into the world’s lies. In January of 2009, the work in my field of specialty got sent to India. I I lost everything and now live with my mother. I work for a McDonald’s at $8 per hour and get about 12-16 hours a week. I also have a business on the side doing in-home computer maintenance and repair and another being a personal assistant. These two businesses give me about $125 a week income.

    When I moved in with mom, she didn’t have a very good relationship with her neighbor. Both are Christians and both thought the other was not friendly. One day I found out that the neighbor had lost all her savings to a money manager who stole her money and that she was struggling to buy food and necessities. I started giving her my tithe money in the form of grocery store gift certificates. By the world’s standards I can’t afford it, but God has lead me in that direction.

    The result is blessings for all three of us. Their relationship has improved and they now talk all the time. The neighbor watches our cat when we go to my sister’s to week for more than a day. And God seems to be blessing my businesses.

  • Iain Cook

    Hi Gwen,

    We love your blog, thank you!

    At I Like Giving we specialize in telling stories of generosity – take a look at our latest story “I Like Soccer Balls” here:

    http://ilikegiving.com/story/i-like-soccer-balls

    We hope it encourages you!

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