Financial giving isn’t something we like to talk about – it ranks with religion and politics around the dinner table. Our hesitancy to talk about giving is a byproduct of our misunderstanding why we give. So let’s talk about it – why do you give?
Too often we are expected to follow along without knowing why we are doing what we are doing. Christian practices are no different, like prayer. Prayer isn’t meant to be a last ditch effort to get the Almighty to save us from our human failures. Prayer instead is an ongoing response to our joy in the Lord.
Easter is not a call to return to the way things were. It is a reminder that in Christ’s resurrection, God’s love wins out over death. It is an invitation to see ourselves redeemed in the reflection of God’s grace, as we hear our name called by the risen Lord, that we may go forth to share the good news, that Christ the Lord is risen today!
The brokenness of humanity is often best defined in our claim to be God – to have the perfection and holiness of Christ, and to reserve the right to offer the judgement of God. Yet, we are not God, we are broken images of God’s creation in need of healing and salvation.
We are so quick to point out the faults in others, especially as it gives us a beneficial leg-up or increase in personal well-being. But Jesus refuses to engage with those who skew the Biblical word for personal gain. On which side of the proverbial line in the sand do you stand?
It’s one thing to know the biblical text. It’s another to be willing to follow it without question. How often do we engage in theological debate simply to avoid share love with those we choose to hate?
Many will claim that spirituality is deeply personal, but the Biblical claim is that faithful spirituality is most authentic when shared in the body of Christ.
Commitment isn’t easy. But if we commit ourselves to Christ, He can do miraculous things, and He blesses the world through the committed.
Even Jesus had a holy discontent for the showy and fake religiosity of the leaders in the Jewish community. Being spiritual but not religious isn’t a rejection of Christ, it’s a faithful dissatisfaction with fake Christian leadership.
Jesus is God’s material gift to humanity even still today. What if we used this giving model for our giving to others at Christmas?