Friday, July 26, 2013

Keys To Financial Success: A Giving Heart

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  This is the Oklahoma Tomcat coming to you from Salina, KS.  I have been doing blogs on, “The keys to financial success” where I have given the keys to being financially successful.  I have given the definition of being financially successful, I have said that in order to be financially successful we must work, be good stewards of money, and be wise.  

Today I am going to talk about the final key to financial success and close this series of blogs.  The final key to financial success is to have a giving heart.   That is correct, we must have a giving heart in order to be financially successful.   Now this goes beyond just giving money and time to those who need it or to the church.  You must actually have a giving heart.  If you just give to feel good or just so you will get money or things in return, you might as well not give at all.  Never ever give to buy God’s love or gift.  Acts 8:18-23 says, “When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money and said, ‘Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.’  Peter answered: ‘May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money!  You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God.  Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps He will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart.  For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”  You must be giving from the heart.    

There are many verses in the Bible that talks about giving and why we must give in order to receive.
We must remember that the money we have was given to us by God for our use.  God gives us the freedom to use the money as we wish but He wants us to use it wisely and to do His will.  One of His will is that we help others as He helps us.  We are the hands and feet of God.  He uses us to help people and in doing so, we show His love to others.  God could solve every ones problems with just a word but He chooses not to because it is the person to person contact that people love and it is threw that contact that people see and feel loved.  Many times, just giving people money or fixing people’s problems isn’t enough.  It is that personal feeling of compassion that really touches people and really changes their life. Think of the times when you needed help and someone actually stopped to not just solve your problem but showed you their love with a hug, a listening ear, a word of encouragement.  It really felt good, right.  Someone really cares about you and loves you.  That was God’s love they showed.  This is one of many reasons why individuals and non-profit organizations can help people while government usually fails to really help people.

Another reason we must help people is because there are people in need.  I often criticize socialism in human government because it doesn’t work.  It doesn’t work because human government works with human ability and human greed.  But with God’s people and God’s ability, socialism does work. Of course, God’s socialism is different.  Remember, no one is being forced to give.  People give out of love and are not being taxed.  Everyone works and everyone helps each other out.  The Church should be an example of God’s Government. In God’s government, there is no needy.  In fact, there is so much money and recourses, God’s people can go outside of the Church to help out non-believers. In Acts 4:34 it says, “There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need.”  This doesn’t mean that we must sell our land and homes, but it shows how socialism works within the Church.  We must help each other.  But we must not only give to the Church, we must help non-believers also and it doesn’t have to always be helping out by giving money.  Everyone should know the story of the Good Samaritan.  The Good Samaritan saw a man in need who was not a Samaritan.  In fact, the person was actually from an enemy country.  Yet, he took the time to help the person anyway.

Another reason we must have a giving heart is because it keeps us from loving money.  Some think that God is only talking about the rich when He talks about the love of money but the poor can also have love for money.  Ecclesiastes 5:10 says, “Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with income. This too is meaningless.”  Of course, if you feel you never have enough money, you will never be financially successful.  You can have all the money in the world and never be financially successful.  You can have a huge income and never be financially successful.  As I said in my first blog on this topic, it isn’t the amount of money you have or make that makes you financially successful. By us helping others and being willing to give our money to those in need of help, we keep from the money we have.
When we give we must not just give what we feel comfortable giving.  One thing to keep in mind is that God takes care of us.  If we are holding back because we are afraid we will not have enough money then we must ask God to help us have more faith in God.  Mark 12:41-44 says, “Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury.  Many rich people threw in large amounts.  But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a fraction of a penny. Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, ‘I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others.  They all gave out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty, put in everything all she had to live on.”  This verse also shows us that it isn’t the amount we give that matters.  One person can give a thousand dollars while another person may only give a dollar.  God may see the person giving a dollar as giving more than the person giving a thousand.  Now, be careful not to challenge God buy giving all your money and expecting God to help you out.  You must listen to the Holy Spirit and give what the Holy Spirit tells you to give.  We all should know that we are to give 10% of our pretax income to the Church.  This is the minimum we should give.  Proverbs 3:9 says, “Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops.” It isn’t written how much we must give or how much we must help those in need because that is for the Holy Spirit to tell us individually and it isn’t a set amount or time.  This is where we must submit to the Holy Spirit.

So, what happens when we do give from the heart?  In Malachi 3:10 it says, “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this, says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.”  In Luke 6:38 it says, “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”  In Proverbs 11:24 it says, “One man gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.” 

So you see, you must have a giving heart to have financial success.  It must be a giving heart that you have.  Do not start giving just so you can be financially successful.  This is probably one of the hardest things to being financially successful because it isn’t just your actions that you have to change.  It is your heart.  This can only be done with the help of the Holy Spirit. If you don’t have a giving heart, you must pray that God changes you on the inside.  It will be a rough journey and the change will not be over night.  But remember that God is with you and will provide for you. 

Well, this concludes the blogs on “Keys To Financial Success.”  I pray that these blogs have been helpful.  I know that this isn’t a Get Rich Quick Scheme and some are probably disappointed.  But if you follow these keys, you will be truly successful and you will remain successful.

This is the Oklahoma Tomcat.  Take care and God Bless.

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