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Giving – The true testgiving

Boot Camp #4 – January 27, 2013

Over the last four weeks – run a spiritual boot camp.

How did you go?

Have you gained some spiritual fitness?

Why do you need to?

Your journey in life is not just physical – it’s also spiritual. How you prosper is about how you understand your spiritual journey. If you’re unfit spiritually how will you cope when spiritual challenges come?

Say: Loved one betrays you?

Lose your job?

Sickness strikes your life?

A person with false doctrine comes by to persuade you of lies?

Your spiritual fitness has eternal repercussions!!

GIVING

The big test of your spiritual fitness is your giving.

If you want to really measure yourself clearly about where your heart is at then look at your giving and your attitude to giving.

Jesus said: Mat 6:21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

So there’s a big link between your money and your heart.

For most people, our money, our possessions and assets define us. “I am who my money says I am” Almost all covet and desire to be rich or to have possessions or to be “comfortable.” For nearly every person comfortable is the goal and it’s always more than what they have now. (Even though in Australia, we are all among the richest 1% of the earth’s population.)

But the goal is not be comfortable. The goal is to make a difference. Remember when you gave your LIFE to Jesus. Your whole life! Was the goal to be comfortable? Or was the goal to be a child of God. To be led by the spirit?

Jesus said: Mat 10:38 And unless you are willing to take up your cross and come with me, you are not fit to be my disciples.

Mat 10:39 If you try to save your life, you will lose it. But if you give it up for me, you will surely find it. (CEV)

HERE’S THE KEY

Luk 16:10 Anyone who can be trusted in little matters can also be trusted in important matters. But anyone who is dishonest in little matters will be dishonest in important matters.

Luk 16:11 If you cannot be trusted with this wicked wealth, who will trust you with true wealth? (CEV)

If you can get it right with money then you will really move forward with true wealth which is eternal and spiritual.

WHY?

Because it takes faith to give; and God wants you to have faith and to grow in faith. We all begin with a fixed pie mentality. More for God mean less for me. If you think this way you’re still in kindergarten spiritually. Jesus reminded the disciples, “hey when you’re with me, there always an abundance, Mat 16:8 But Jesus, aware of this, asked, Why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? O you [men, how little trust you have in Me, how] little faith!

Mat 16:9 Do you not yet discern (perceive and understand)? Do you not remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many [small hand] baskets you gathered?

Mat 16:10 Nor the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many [large provision] baskets you took up? (AMP)

When you get faith you will transition to see money as seed. The more you get rid of in the right place the more you will end up with.

2Co 9:10 And [God] Who provides seed for the sower and bread for eating will also provide and multiply your [resources for] sowing and increase the fruits of your righteousness [which manifests itself in active goodness, kindness, and charity]. [Isa. 55:10; Hos. 10:12.]

2Co 9:11 Thus you will be enriched in all things and in every way, so that you can be generous, and [your generosity as it is] administered by us will bring forth thanksgiving to God.

Some people are not able to hear this message. They will go away and be unaffected by the reality of God’s spiritual program in giving and receiving. They may have great possessions on earth but as they enter into heaven there will be nothing in their pockets, no rewards.

Mat 6:19 Do not gather and heap up and store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust and worm consume and destroy, and where thieves break through and steal.

Mat 6:20 But gather and heap up and store for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust nor worm consume and destroy, and where thieves do not break through and steal; (AMP)

My story.

In my first year – I gave $1000 to the church building program – Later when I got married we rented a house that everything in it down to the pegs, detergent and mower fuel. Later a gift of $3K helped buy our first house.

In 1994 we sold our home in Brisbane and gave $5K to the church building project.

(no profit) It wasn’t long before we purchased two properties.

In this church our first ever offering we gave the whole lot away, we became self sufficient in only six months.

The church one time really struggling financially – gave away our whole weeks offering at Christmas. No blessing appeared to come at first, but later when we bought the building it was a bargain price and we sold it after ten years and the church made a capital gain of $800K.

However, when you give, don’t look for the rewards, give because of the joy of giving.

We give because our hearts are moved.

Two stories about this.

Mat 26:7 A woman came up to Him with an alabaster flask of very precious perfume, and she poured it on His head as He reclined at table.

Mat 26:8 And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, For what purpose is all this waste?

Mat 26:9 For this perfume might have been sold for a large sum and the money given to the poor.

Mar 12:41 And He sat down opposite the treasury and saw how the crowd was casting money into the treasury. Many rich [people] were throwing in large sums.

Mar 12:42 And a widow who was poverty-stricken came and put in two copper mites [the smallest of coins], which together make half of a cent.

Mar 12:43 And He called His disciples [to Him] and said to them, Truly and surely I tell you, this widow, [she who is] poverty-stricken, has put in more than all those contributing to the treasury.

Mar 12:44 For they all threw in out of their abundance; but she, out of her deep poverty, has put in everything that she had–[even] all she had on which to live. (AMP)

We give because our hearts are grateful, we give because our hearts are moved, we give to Jesus, we give to His passion – the church. We love His church we love this house so we give. Ever since the year we were born again Chris and I have given between 10% – 20% of our gross income to the Lord. Whether we gain financially from it is never the issue, we are so thankful that He has saved us and given us a new life.

To be spiritually fit = TRUST

Php 4:19 And my God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (AMP)

We don’t give what we can afford – that is fixed pie mentality, we give as God moves our hearts.

We give because of the joy of giving. Of course there are rewards and I am amazed at what God has done for us. We are truly blessed with assets, marriage, family and health. Be a giver, and give from the heart.

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