It’s a story I will likely have to revisit often as I frequently need the reminder of how it should be; how it can be. The details surrounding the Jews preparations for building God’s temple in Jerusalem are just incredible. Between David and his people, a staggering 10 million ounces of gold, and 20 million ounces of silver were donated!
But perhaps more impressive was the collective mindset of those who gave. After seeing all that the people had contributed, David stopped and uttered a prayer of thanks to God, and in it were these profound words…
“But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from You, and of Your own have we given You” (1 Chron 29:14).
Yes, they had given a tremendous amount to this cause. However, David acknowledged that they were truly only giving to God what was already His. The difficult-to-accept truth is we would have nothing on our own. Unfortunately, once our name goes on things, we begin to think of them as “ours,” and giving “our things” away becomes much more difficult.
When we think about giving away our things, we may selfishly want to hold on to what we’ve worked so hard to acquire. Giving also gets complicated by our pride over all we’ve been able to accumulate and then give. Or, we may wrestle with fear about not having enough for a rainy day down the road. The truth is, when we see things as our own, releasing them from our hands just becomes that much harder – trust me, I know!
But, look at the outcome when God’s people maintained the perspective that everything they could give already belonged to Him; He had simply loaned it to them for a season.
“Then the people rejoiced because they had offered so willingly, for they made their offering to the Lord with a whole heart” (v.9).
The source of our giving is God – the outcome of our giving is joy. Give it a try! –Dave
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