Thursday, January 27, 2011

How to give

God told David that he was not the one to build the temple for the ark of the covenant. Instead, his son Solomon would be called to fulfill this great work. The project will take lots of money, workers, and material to build the house of the Lord. 
David exercised great leadership and first gave an extremely generous gift. Then he then turned to his other leaders and invited them to do the same. He did not force them; giving is a matter of the heart. He asked them to give a free-will offering toward God's great work (I Chronicles 29:1-6). 
The response was overwhelming and David praised God for his goodness and greatness:
All good things come from God! Sometimes I forget this. God owns everything. I know this is true from an intellectual sense, but in practice, in my daily living, I often forget. All that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. 
Both riches and honor come from you and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. And now we thank you, our God, and praise your glorious name. 
For all things come from you and of your hand we have given you. This one of the most important principles for giving. What you have in your house, in your wallet, in your bank account, the car in your yard, your furniture, your clothes, your food in the refrigerator, the place where you work, your family, your health, your retirement savings, everything, comes from the hand of God. So when we give, we are really giving back what we received from the Lord in the first place. 
David says, O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a house...comes from your hand and is all your own. 
These are great principles to remember when thinking about how to give our lives, our resources and our gifts.