Sacrificial Giving

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Our church is currently involved in a stewardship program that is asking members to make a sacrificial gift over a three year period.  We are trying to pay off the mortgage of our church school as well as take care of some of the needs of our building.

Now, I am retired and have a limited income.  I already give.  What else can I sacrifice?  I prayed about this.  I know that I can’t out give the Lord.  Several years ago I preached a stewardship sermon about making a commitment to the Lord.  In the sermon, I gave my best fishing reel to our Prison Ministry for their auction.  Before I finished greeting people at the door on the way out, someone had already donated money to the Prison Ministry and told them to give me back my reel!  What a blessing!  I don’t even know who did it.

Well, as I was praying about this new commitment, I kept asking, “Lord, what do you want me to sacrifice?”  It occurred to me that the only thing that would be a sacrifice for me would be to give up fishing for three years.  I asked, “Is it time for me to give up fishing?”  The answer came back, “No.”  Fishing is my release.  But then the idea came to me to give up my fishing tackle money for the next three years.  I lose hooks, rigs, and lures of every kind; and my budget is $200 a year to replace them.  So I decided to commit my $600 as I get it in the next three years.  When I run out of hooks, rigs, and lures, that will be the end of my fishing.  Right now it is striper season, and I’m looking forward to March when shad fishing starts.

I shouldn’t be surprised, but about two weeks after I made this commitment, my friend Erick gave me a large zip bag of lures.  He said he has more that he’ll give me as he sorts his out.  He didn’t know about my pledge.  Confirmation from God of my commitment to Him.  Amazing!

God already owns everything, including me.  And when things get tough and I need to get away, I still can go fishing to relax and think.  God does love a cheerful giver!

 

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