Givers and Takers
The Bible says, "Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work."1
Some televangelists claim that if you give generously (to their ministry of course), God will greatly bless you with wealth. But is this true? According to today's Scripture if we tithe and give generously and cheerfully to God, this is something that God loves, but the blessing God promises is that our needs will be met—not that we will become wealthy—and as such we will abound in good works; that is, we will become rich in good works.
It is true that God has greatly blessed many capable and generous business people with financial success who have, in turn, given greatly to God's work. The important lesson we all need to learn, however, is that we need to give to God's work in thanksgiving to God and to Jesus for giving his life to die on the cross to pay the penalty for all our sins—not for what we can get—but rather to become rich and abound in good works—good works that will glorify God.
To put it bluntly: in life there are givers and takers. Givers give cheerfully of whatever they have—even if it is only friendship, encouragement, and service—and always reap a reward and become richer as persons. Takers, who are always on the take to see what they can get for themselves, will always be paupers as persons, no matter how wealthy financially or otherwise they may or may not become.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be a giver in every area of life, including of what finances I have, and so become rich and abound in good works. May I always give cheerfully as unto you in thanksgiving for all you have done for me. Furthermore, help me to be wise in all that I give and be certain that I am serving you and giving to your work on earth. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus' name, amen."
1. 2 Corinthians 9:6-8 (NIV).