Abundant Expectation

“Abundant generosity is the heart of giving we are called to.”

Her words hold deep meaning. She is sacrificially living out the wisdom she gives. Her life is marked with it. Abundant generosity. Generous not because she can afford it but because she is the daughter of our abundantly generous God.

It’s a funny thing. It doesn’t make sense. But we each are an essential part of a Kingdom that has no real need for us. We are insignificant. Limited. Powerless. Yet our time, energies, finances, and lives are resourcing the Kingdom of all kingdoms.

Today I am staring at a convicting gut check. As I listened to her talk about the way Yahweh guides her each day… or rather, how she allows herself to be guided by Him. Allows herself to hear. And chooses to respond. Chooses to say yes. Gives with abundant generosity. Gives her time, energy, finances… her life. As I listened to her, I realized that I have been allowing my circumstances to limit my willingness to be part of God’s huge, amazing, incredible plan.

So here’s the gut check: If God is going to ask me to do something, why wouldn’t I trust that He would provide the resources to do it?

It is easy for my husband and I to tithe. Ten percent right away. No hesitation. No question. The very first line item in our budget. It’s easy for us to tithe because day after day, month after month, year after year, God has provided way beyond our income. He has covered bills every month that exceed that tithe amount by far. He has met needs we couldn’t have planned for. He has provided so incredibly. That tithe is a tiny symbol of our gratitude to the Almighty God. That tithe is a non-negotiable for us.

But when the global financial crisis hit and we both lost our jobs on the same day, we cut our extra giving. Everything above and beyond our tithe. We cut gifts including Christmas. We cut blessing people. We cut giving to missions. We cut everything extra. We cut our budget to nothing but essentials because that was the wise thing to do. Of course it was. And my highly skilled and educated husband worked every job he could his hands on including stocking shelves at Target in the wee hours. And we have lived tight for four years. Because you should not spend money you don’t have.

That’s right. You should not spend money you don’t have. And so I’ve given my time, my energy, my skills, my heart. I’ve given all I could. All I had.

But today I’m faced with a faith challenge: Why am I allowing my circumstances to limit my involvement in His Kingdom? Why am I not financially giving with abundant generosity? Why am I comfortable to tithe and expect His provision, but not give above and beyond with the same faith-filled expectation?

Praying. For ears to hear Him. For courage to obey.

You can be sure that God will take care of everything you need, his generosity exceeding even yours in the glory that pours from Jesus. (Phil 4:19 Msg)
The apostles came up and said to the Master, “Give us more faith.” (Luke 17:5 Msg)

Note: My laptop died yesterday. So today there is no pretty verse image with my bloggings. I find it funny and deeply good that God would have me consider how to give to others more on a day when we are sadly aware that we are unable to afford a new computer. It makes me smile. God sure knows how to peel back the layers of my heart. Selah.

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