Sunday, December 26, 2010

Matthew 6:3&4

"But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be done in secret. Then the Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you."

This is a hard one for so many people (including myself). A lot of the time, i really want the person to know i gave to them. It is a hard task to keep it to myself & to give in such a way that the person doesnt know or cannot find out. It works my mind in circles trying to examine my heart for all possible attempts by my self-centered ego to get credit. Here are some of the ways i have caught myself:

-when i tithe, in order to get the tax credit, i use a check.In this way, i know that "someone" at my church knows that we give and how much.I struggle with this because the amount we give is as the Lord has commanded and amounts to a good bit back on our return.I continue to struggle in this area.
-if i give by mail or in an anonymous card/envelope, i know that if i write a blessing or greeting in it , even without signing my name, that the person may recognize my handwriting and credit would go to me , & not to the Father.
-i used to just hand an envelope to someone in need, but this one is so obvious.
-at other times i would give the money to someone else who knew the person and make them promise NOT to tell them who it was from. Of course, then 2 persons potentially would credit me for the gift.

It is really hard to be creative enough to get around the ego.The ego is extremely sneaky and will try to justify everything!I have even driven around looking for complete strangers to give gift cards to, looking for those who look homeless or needy. I figure they don't know me, i don't know them. Once i was on a back road & stop to hand one to a man walking alone. He was indignant about it & stated "do you know who i am?i have a huge stone house & 4 corvettes sitting in my driveway. I live in------- so if you ever drive by it you will know who you gave this to."I hope if he was'nt lieing that, since he was so wealthy , he at least paid it forward.I can't lie either. This event shook me and now i question myself when i am thinking of giving something "will this person be offended?".

Either way, i DO try.

Nowadays, i look at all the angles. I give cash at church if there's an additional offering taken or put a gift card in the basket. I send gift cards instead of a check, and i don't put a return address. I figure i am putting it in the Lords care, so if it gets lost in delivery He is putting it to use elsewhere.Praying before sending is a MUST!!!
Using money orders is good or dropping the envelope on a desk or in a mailbox when you are SURE no one is looking is also good.

Ultimately , i examine my heart and do my best to be truthful with myself.If there is anyway the Lord doesnt get the credit, and i get any credit, i keep turning over alternatives.
Once in a very very great while it is impossible to do it anonymously.But i always make it very very clear that God enabled the gift not me.

Hope you will all read your bibles version of this verse and act accordingly.

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