Are You a Cheerful Giver?
Are you a cheerful giver? This is one of my top ministry gifts. I am a giver.
What is a giver? A person gifted in the area of giving has the ability to provide resources to others with a joyful heart. We, givers, love seeing the needs of others met. Lifeway Convention Press noted that people with the gift of giving primarily give based on the Lord’s prompting. They have the ability to see a need in someone that others may have overlooked. People who score high in giving also enjoy giving discreetly without the need for recognition or praise.
When you give to others, what’s your motivation or purpose? Do you give because you desire to be generous and meet the needs of others? Or do you find yourself giving to be recognized or increase your likes or out of a sense of obligation?
Despite our best efforts at giving with a joyful heart, we need to be aware of our intentions and motivations as we extend generosity toward others. These days with social media, it can be easy to get caught up in the perpetual state of humblebragging. You know a humble statement you make for the purpose of self-promotion. Yep, social media can get the best of us if we are not focused on our true intentions for giving.
“So whenever you give to the poor and do acts of kindness, do not blow a trumpet before you [to advertise it], as the hypocrites do [like actors acting out a role] in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored and recognized and praised by men. I assure you and most solemnly say to you, they [already] have their reward in full. But when you give to the poor and do acts of kindness, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing [give in complete secrecy], so that your charitable acts will be done in secret; and your Father who sees [what is done] in secret will reward you.” Matthew 6:2-4 AMP
When you give, do you give to be recognized? Or do you give from your heart to meet someone’s need? This week, with the holidays quickly approaching, I’d like to focus our attention on the significance of giving – why we choose to give and the reason behind our giving.
Why We are Called to Give
In Deuteronomy 16:17 AMP, it says, “Every man shall give as he is able, in accordance with the blessing which the Lord your God has given you. Why should we give? Because God has given to us. And out of what He has given to us, He asks that we be generous, giving to those in need.”
I hope this verse sheds some light on our reason for giving. My Holman KJV Study Bible states that no one is too poor to give, and no one is expected to give more than she can provide. You see, God does not require that we give all of our resources, but He does ask us to give according to what He has given to us.
Our reason for giving should be from a place of gratitude for all God has given to us. God blesses us with the expectation that we will, in turn, bless others. It’s reciprocal. Remember the woman with two coins in Luke 21? She quietly gave her two tiny coins while the wealthy gave from their surplus. Jesus commended the widow for her generosity, knowing she shared from a heart of thankfulness.
Our reason for giving is essential to our spiritual growth. When we give for the purpose of recognition or self-promotion for all to see, we are no longer giving in accordance with God’s Word. Although our gifts may be used to help others, Deuteronomy reminds us that our motivation for giving is to bring glory and honor to God, not ourselves.
Challenge: Is there an area in your life where God is calling you to give, and you are holding back from giving all that you can give? This week prayerfully seek God’s will for your giving and ask Him to show you areas where you can assist someone by giving your time or resources.
A Heart for Giving
Do you love to give? Giving may not be your top ministry gift, but that does not mean that you are not a giver. The Ministry Gifts Assessment recognizes one of my top strengths to be giving, and I am also aware that many of my friends are joyful givers. Whether giving is a top ministry gift or not, they have a heart for giving – my gal pals love to give!
What is most significant about my dear friends giving? They give not to receive but out of a desire to show their love and appreciation. Giving truly is a matter of the heart, and Paul knew this, which is why he encouraged the church members of Corinth to be cheerful givers!
“Let each one give [thoughtfully and with purpose] just as he has decided in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver [and delights in the one whose heart is in his gift].” 2 Corinthians 9:7 AMP
God’s desire is for us to give with a pure heart. He doesn’t want us to give out of reluctance or a sense of obligation. Where’s the pleasure in giving to others from a sense of duty? Just as God does not want half-hearted followers, He doesn’t want half-hearted givers. God desires for us to give with a willing and joyful heart.
Challenge: Spend time in prayer and reflect on your reason for giving. Are you giving out of obligation, or are you giving from a deep love for the Lord and people? If you are giving from a sense of obligation, what steps can you take to create a heart for giving?
A Season for Giving
I honestly cannot think of a better time than the present to spend time in prayer and reflection considering how and to whom we should give of our time and resources. And I encourage you, courageous women with a heart for God, to seek Him with all your heart so that you will also discover where God is calling you to give.
Friends, it is a great time to give! Let’s not focus on the noise and the chaos. Let us not be distracted by why we are here and our calling. We are just a few weeks away from Thanksgiving. A holiday in which we have the opportunity to express our gratitude for all that we have received. Let’s give God the glory!
It is my prayer that you will spend time serving, giving, and loving those around you. Each day, God offers us an opportunity to give back joyfully. Seek His will and allow Him to show you the way. And, wherever you choose to give, I hope you will reflect upon your reason for giving. As Matthew 6:21 AMP, “for where your treasure is, there your heart [your wishes, your desires; that on which your life centers] will be also.”
I desire that my heart is centered on God. What is your desire? I’d love to hear your stories on how God has used you to give to others. Join us in the Reflecting Life Community, an online mentoring community for authentic connection and conversation, and share your story with like-minded women!
Keep on shining!