I am reading articles about impending tax reform. Some are saying the proposed reforms will reduce charitable giving by upwards of $20 billion dollars because there will be reduced tax benefits.
This may be true for people looking only for some tax relief or giving for reasons other than sharing their blessings and giving back to God a portion of that which He has provided. But this is not true of those who understand that we are stewards of the Living God, the Almighty Creator, and the Savior of our eternal souls.
A steward gives first and foremost as an act of worship to the One who has done so much and given so much to us. Money is talked about throughout the Bible more than most other topics, not because God needs money — but because money represents a good portion of our time and focus. When we give money to God’s church and other work, we give something in which we place great value. The only worthier gift is our very life, a commitment of ourselves to Jesus. And if He has us, He will have our wallets and investments too.
I am grateful for the tax benefits afforded to us for giving to worthy ministry, but I believe that what drives most Christians to give is love — love of God, the unsaved, the widows, and the poor.
If we give as God instructs, we are not driven by tax brackets. Rather, we are compelled to please our Heavenly Father and lay up treasures in heaven — rewards promised for eternity. These are worth infinitely more than a few tax dollars saved over the next few years. Besides, even if Congress makes the changes they are currently contemplating, there are still other planning tools available for those who want to leverage their giving for greater Kingdom impact.
The key to giving or any charitable work is attitude! God looks on the heart, not at the amount given. He looks at why we give and if our gifts are acts of worship and love. I believe that when we obediently follow his instructions, we are only doing what is best for us … because our obedience opens the flood gates of his blessings.
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.
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