If I had all the money I wanted, I suppose I would still be financially strapped. I love to give and over the years have given away many things that were precious to me. But the one gift I most wanted to give I couldn’t. My grandfather never owned a new car in his entire lifetime. I often dreamed of being able to buy him a brand new vehicle, park it in his driveway, and watch his reaction. I kept this dream until his health grew feeble and he could no longer drive. Giving him this gift would have been a present from my heart for all he and my grandmother did for me. Gracing him with a new car would have been my way of showing him my appreciation. Though the dream never became reality, I believe God honored the desires of my heart.
Long before God established the priesthood in the nation of Israel, Melchizedek served as priest of Salem (Jerusalem). Since there is no record of his birth or death, he is referred to as a priest forever. Abraham—after fighting a battle against enemy kings and returning home, chose to give a tenth of all he had won in battle to this priest king. These gifts from the heart were Abraham’s way of showing his appreciation to God for protecting him in battle.
When I give from the heart, it will be voluntary as Abraham’s was and not forced. I won’t care who knows what I give or even that I give, for it is an expression of my gratitude to God, not a show to receive other’s praise or to make an impression. If I give only because I feel forced or because I experience guilt, I’ll give out of the wrong motives every time. In the end, the attitude with which I give is much more important than the amount—although amount does express the heart of my giving.
Is your giving a heart-felt present?
Prayer: Father, may our giving be an expression of our love
(Photo courtesy of morguefile and Jusben.)