The Gift of Giving

There is a fundamental truth in the Bible that must not escape us: giving is a God-given gift. God delights in giving. He gives apples and guava; bread and wine. Everything comes from His hands. John said a person can receive only what is given to them from heaven (Jn. 3:27). Just as the truth of our salvation is of heavenly origin, the gift of everything is from heaven also. Life is good, but life is only delicious when we accept and affirm that God is the giver of all good things. Give thanks always and when always is not enough, give thanks some more. Find excuses to give thanks. Find work breaks for thanksgiving. Sing with thanksgiving and sing about thanksgiving. It is a Christian gift. This is what it means to be imitators of God: not simply that we mimic the Creator, but that we give Him thanks for allowing us to imitate Him.

There is nothing more profound than giving. Jesus gave His life for us because it was better for Him to give than to receive. Jesus set an example of giving; greater love hath no man than the One who lays His life for another. Giving is what sets us apart as Christians. Why do we give? We give because we desire to be like our Lord. When do we give? As often as the sun rises. We are to give of our gifts, our resources, our homes, and ultimately, our lives.

Jesus, who came in human flesh, gave up His heavenly home to give up His earthly body. He abandoned glory to embrace a gory tree.

Paul speaks of esteeming others better than ourselves. This is a form of giving; giving up. This is the remarkable contrast between the first Adam and the last Adam. The first Adam took, the second Adam gave. The first Adam took glory for himself, the last Adam gave from his glory. The first Adam took for himself, the last Adam gave of himself.

Giving is a cultivated gift. For some giving is easier than others. For others giving has not been pursued. But we are called and created to be givers. Just as God gave form to a formless world, in our giving we give form to formless humanity. Giving is a form of restoring broken humanity. It is better to give than to receive, because in giving we receive.

A wonderful example of this is illustrated in this three minute video: