I was thinking about Jesus… and I was trying to think of when he asked anyone for anything, when he took anything from anyone.
I came up with:
- The woman at the well. Jesus asked her for something to drink.
- The disciples. Jesus asked them to follow him.
- Maybe the food from the boy when Jesus fed the five thousand.
- That was about it. You may be able to think of more though.
It seems that every time Jesus asked someone for something, he did so in order to be able to give them something greater in return.
- He asked the woman at the well for a drink so that he could start a conversation that would ultimately lead to her being forgiven of her sins.
- He asked twelve men to become his disciples so he could do the same for them.
- He asked the boy with the loaves and fish so that he could feed the boy AND everyone else. Imagine, for the rest of your life being the guy who gave Jesus your lunch so he could feed five thousand people with it!
Jesus gave and gave and gave, not so that he could put himself in a position to ask for something back but so that he could give some more.
I love following Mike Ellis on Twitter. Mike is a great guy and a wonderful brother in Christ – he’s also a marketing man. Mike talks all the time about giving, giving and more giving in the social media world. His reasoning is that you have to give to receive.
I’m not going to dispute that. In this day and age, companies need to give before people will buy, that’s the nature of competition in this day and age.
Jesus was teaching us something different though. He taught us to give, give, give and give some more and, if we need anything, to take our needs to God in prayer.
I love the Autobiography of George Muller. If you’ve never read it, I totally recommend it. Mr Muller lived a life totally dependent on God. He gave and gave and gave and would not ask man for anything. Everything he needed he got on his knees and prayed for.
Maybe he was a little extreme but I think we can all learn something from him. How often do you give in the hope that you will get something back? How often do you give to receive?
I want to live my life as Jesus modelled. I want to give, give, give. Not to receive but just to give.
As you go, preach this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.
16 Reply to “Give to… give”
Great verse. 1 Corinthians 4:7 ties in nicely there too.
Just something to be careful of, in our society we tend to view acts of service or giving that we also benefit from as compromised. If we look to benefit from an act, it loses its moral value. That isn’t the case. I’m need to work through it some more but I might put up a post up later. If you want to give to be more like Jesus or store up treasures in heaven, is that selfish? Does it lose its value if you want to learn humility? Something to think about.
Good comments, Chris.
I think, as with anything, it comes down to the motives of our heart. Are our motives pure or evil?
If I give because I hope to gain something virtuous (humility, love, even treasure in Heaven, which Jesus told us to seek) then that is good. If I give for selfish gain then that’s not so good.
Jesus gave to gain followers – and that was good!
Great food for thought (all the talk about fishes and loaves…haven’t had breakfast yet) Peter. We should really examine any motives we have when giving.
And the site is looking fab!
This post was SO timely. I just tweeted on Twitter,
‘”In life, we have two choices. To give or to get. Which do you live by?”
I love how God confirms my thinking with truths like your post.
Two great minds think alike…. or maybe God is just saying something today! 🙂
Just imagine how many needs would be met if everyone gave, expecting nothing in return. The world would be a great place to live! 🙂
Thanks for sharing,
I know.. right?
Peter, I don’t tell you enough how much I love your blog … BUT I DO!
And I love your heart for Jesus too.
Thanks Trey, that’s really very timely today!
I think even Jesus gave hoping for something in return. Things like gratitude (remember the ten lepers?)
Most of all, He sought relationship.
Certainly, He was often disappointed, even hurt. It didn’t stop Him from giving everything. I want to be like that.
You’re right Anne. Hoping but not expecting. Willing to give everything knowing that billions would still reject him!
I think you’re right- once we “get” it, a life of giving is the only one that makes sense and is fulfilling. It keeps reciprocating and growing exponentially. We sow then we can expect to reap (sparingly or extravagantly). The greatest motivation for me is that God has given everything and in light of the cross, how can I say no?
… and you say it so much more eloquently than me!
Another great post! To give without ‘expecting’ anything in return (at least not selfishly) hmmm…
And God’s “more” will always trump our surrender in the matter! Beautifully said.
Yes it will! Thanks for stopping by, Elaine!