Lay Devotion with Ray Leonard
2 Corinithians 9 6 Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. 7Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
We are all familiar with verses 6 and 7, but when we stop there it seems that we miss what I believe is the key point that is brought out in verses 8 to 11.
8And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 9As it is written: "He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor; his righteousness endures forever." 10Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 11You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
How often do we really stop to think about the true meaning of our gifts of time, talent, and treasure. We all know that God loves a cheerful giver and that we should be faithful stewards of all His resources. We know that means that we need to give to benefit others who are less fortunate. We know that in order for the church to do His work here on Earth, the church requires our total support in time, talents and treasure. We know that all of this is expected of us and we should do it cheerfully, but how often do we stop to consider why we should be cheerful givers?
God not only gave his Son for us, but we continue to enjoy his grace and love everyday of our lives. By cheerfully giving back what He has given us we are not only sharing His love with those who can benefit most from it, but we are giving God thanks for His generosity and all that He has done and continues to do in our lives. Given this, it is easy to see why God would love a cheerful giver because He knows we are giving not because we feel obligated or out of a sense of duty but because we recognize and appreciate His gifts to us. He knows we need to express our thanksgiving in a meaningful way through our own generosity.
Let us pray:
Gracious and loving God, we know that we are not always as generous as we should be or are able to be. We understand that giving cheerfully of all we have to offer is what you expect and desire from us. Our prayer is that You will not only guide and lead us as we seek to live lives of generosity, but that You will provide us with the tools we will need as we create a true spirit of generosity among all who worship at Your church in Centreville. All of this we ask in Your Son’s name. Amen