By Ray Lynch
How did you react when the housing market recently faltered and your 401K account took a hit? Did you feel less rich? Americans tend to value themselves based on how much “stuff” they’ve accumulated. Their house size and location, the vehicle they drive, and the size of their 401K determine their worth. But for Christians, this should not be the measure of how rich we are.
In writing to the Christians of the church in Corinth, Paul put true wealth into proper perspective. He said, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich.” (2 Corinthians 8:9, NASB) To the church at Ephesus, Paul again pointed out the value of our relationship with Christ, saying that he was blessed “to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ.”
If you have trusted Jesus for your salvation, then you have been “sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise,” and you will spend eternity with God. Worldly wealth will come and go, but the eternal riches of Christ can never be taken away. The churches of Macedonia understood this, and even though they were in “deep poverty” from a worldly perspective, they gave generously, “beyond their ability,” to the collection being taken for the suffering Christians in Jerusalem. (2 Corinthians 8:1-5)
Does your giving reflect an understanding on your part of the rich inheritance you have received? Have you ever begged your church to give more to those in need, just as the Macedonians begged the Apostle Paul to allow them to graciously bless the believers in Jerusalem? If you give based on your worldly wealth, then you’ll probably come up short of God’s will. Instead, draw closer to the Lord and allow this deeper relationship, and the understanding of your eternal wealth, to help you become a “grace giver.” You will never regret it.