Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Blessed Each Day: To Give

It seems to me that many people walk through this life without realizing the amazing blessings of sacrificial giving.  I'm not talking about the type of giving where you have $3000 in the bank and give $30 a month for sponsorship.  That's wonderful (do it!).  But today sacrificial giving, and the blessings that come from that act, is on my heart.
Luke 21:1-4 says:
As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. “Truly I tell you,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”
Eric and I haven't been so good at this kind of giving in the last few years.  We've given more, monetarily, but it "cost" us less, sacrificially.  At the same time, because of the unique position I've been in with raising money for Ghana's vulnerable populations, I have seen many people give sums of time or money that I know must "cost" them much.  From afar, I see the Lord work amazing details out in the lives of these families, who put their trust in Him, giving sacrificially when He says to, even if it doesn't make financial sense.
I am thankful today that through Eric's unemployment we now have an opportunity to think more about our giving.  To pray over each amount of time or money we give.  And to step out in faith to give MORE than it makes sense to give, putting our trust in the Lord to make ends meet.
I am thankful today that most everybody in this world has SOMETHING to give.  I have been privileged in my life to meet some of the richest people in the world, that the world would categorize as the poorest.  They have very few possessions, but possess an abundance of peace and joy.  They give of what they have freely, because they know that truly, nobody can plan for tomorrow.  I have eaten off of the only plate, with the only fork a family owns.  And with thanks, because I would never deny someone their right to GIVE, no matter the size of the gift.
What can each of us give that just doesn't make worldly sense?  What can we give that "hurts" just a little (or a lot), but in that really exciting, exhilarating, freeing way?   
I wasn't planning to talk about this tonight, but it feels right.  Eban Project (the non-profit that I donate my time to) will be establishing a much needed rehabilitation and vocational center in the Upper West Region of Ghana.  In order to do that, we need 100 people to stand along side us and say, "I am One.  I will raise or contribute $200 (or more) towards Eban House by January 1, 2014."
I am one.  I know our family can do this for Eban House.  I know Eban House will change hundreds of lives (if not thousands) in Ghana.  There will be much more info to come about this, but I'm giving you the early invite to be One as well.  To fundraise and/or donate during holiday time is definitely a sacrificial gift.  Let me know if you want to join us and change some lives.
P.S.  As an aside, the first ten to say "I am One" will receive a new "I am One" Eban Project t-shirt.