DECEMBER 2: Gratitude is a giver
Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life.*
A grateful life isn’t simply one says “thanks” for their current inventory. A grateful life isn’t measured in what you have, but measured in what you have to offer.
I was convinced of scarcity early. I loved pizza, but almost always had it with my family or a large group of friends. I had to act fast and was almost always left wanting more. It wasn’t until I was an adult did I order a pizza just for myself(a sure sign you’re a grown up: the freedom to order pizza for "one").
As I grew up, it wasn’t about pizza anymore, but it was about feeling stuck, under-resourced, unlucky, out of time and not talented enough to matter. If there’s not enough to go around, I may not get all I want.
This scarcity mindset, while untrue, can be oddly comforting. If there’s not enough to go around, I can justify getting what I want any way I can. If I don't have enough to share, I don't have to put myself out there or sacrifice and give up the thing I have--because someone has a better thing to share anyway.
Fact is, this is no more true than message the abundance perspective tells us.
I have something someone needs. I wonder who needs what I have to offer?
I have just as much time as anyone ever had, how can maximize my impact?
I’m uniquely qualified and no one has my story. I may repeating great ideas and concepts, but I have a unique lens.
People who share all they have get all they can.
You want to know how to let God be responsible for your joy? Share. Shore up good deeds. Give. He’s wired you for it, he’s resourced you for it. In some strange, miraculous way, the more you try to keep, the smaller your life gets.
Jesus—the most famous person who ever lived, wasn’t remembered ultimately for his money. He didn’t have any. He wasn’t remembered for his talent as a teacher. He wasn’t remembered for the years he devoted to serving. He only gave 3. He is remembered for giving his life and it changed everything.
You might feel depleted, used or unlucky today. The best antidote isn’t getting more (though I hope you do). It’s opening up your life to share.
PRAYER FOR TODAY
“God, I don’t even know everything you can do, but I know you can do more than I imagine. I don’t know everything you want to give me, but you’ve given me enough to share. I’m ready to share. I want all the freedom and joy you have for me.”
CHOICE FOR TODAY
Choose at least one act of intentional sharing. Serve a need. Donate to a charity. Buy someone’s meal. Stop and listen to a left out person. Fix someone’s problem.
*Paul’s first letter to Timothy, chapter 6, verses 17–19, emphasis mine