How to give and please God
Congregational Scripture Reading: II Corinthians 9: 6-8
Now that you have all the moans and groans out of your system, having heard the sermon title. Lets take and honest look at what it takes to give and please God. My daddy was not a regular church attender. He kind of reminded of John Walton on the Waltons. He was not an atheist, but he was not a committed believer either. He said that every time he went to church, the pastor’s sermon was on tithing or giving. A lot of folks feel that way. They look at the church as a money hungry organization with big budgets and unnecessary gold and silver icons and adornments. And sadly enough, In some situations I would have to agree with them based on the evidence we see at times. But what I want to speak to this morning is not how your giving relates to the Church, but how it relates to God. Specifically, how to please God with your giving.
I. If you want to please God with your giving, give sacrificially.
A. When we give sacrificially, it is pleasing to God.
B. The widow gave all she had.
C. It is appreciated when we give anything.
D. It is especially pleasing when we give sacrificially.
1. What does sacrificially mean?
A. Give till it hurts.
B. Give till faith is involved.
C. In the case of the Ham and Egg Breakfast. The chicken contributed and the pig gave sacrificially.
Illustration: Imagine one of your children finding a 50 cents and buying a candy bar. The world would say finders keepers. Reap all the benefits. Fairness would say, share it equally among your brothers and sisters. Sacrificially would give more to others than they actually kept, even if it was not enough to satisfy.
E. I am not telling you to give all you have.
F. I am not telling you to give 10 Percent.
G. I am not telling you to give at all.
H. I am telling you that if you want to please God with your giving, learn to give sacrificially.
I. What you will find is that it out of necessity your sacrifice will become larger and larger, because God will honor it and continually bless you.
J. In our passage, the wealthy gave much more than the widow, in terms of the size of the gift. But God measured the intent of the heart, and she came out on top.
II. If you want to please God with your giving, give without expectations.
A. It is a wise thing to measure the return on your investment when it comes to your personal finances.
B. When it comes to giving to God, we should give without expectations of a return.
C. Rest assured, if you follow the outline, you will be blessed if your heart has the right attitude.
D. When giving to God, our motivation should be that of Love and obedience.
E. Not an expectation of a return.
F. Indeed, as a believer, you are already promised a return that money cannot buy.
G. You will walk on streets of pure gold one day.
H. Your reward is in heaven.
I. Do not look for your reward here on earth.
K. Do not give for the purpose of receiving a blessing.
L . You have already been blessed if you have something to give.
III. If you want to please God with your giving, give with a smile on your face.
A. II Corinthians 9:6-8
B. Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks or if you will allow me the liberty, smiles.
C. If you use the excuse, " I cannot give cheerfully, so I do not give," be careful.
D. Have you ever told your child, " If you do not quit crying, I will give you something to cry about."
E. We have much to be thankful for.
F. We have a lot to smile about.
G. God says give cheerfully.
H. This is easy to do if you remember where what you have came from.
I. It is easy to do if you realize where it is going.
J. It is not going to me.
K. It is going toward growing God’s Kingdom here on earth and through eternity.
L. We pray "Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be Done on Earth as it is in Heaven"
M. That is what your tithes and offerings are doing. Helping to fulfill the Great Commission.
N. If that doesn’t put a smile on your face, something’s wrong.
O. You may need to go back to square one and do some reevaluating of your relationship with Christ. Or some confessing and repenting or perhaps both.
P. God loves a cheerful smiling giver, because it is evidence that they truly understand what is going on. They understand what God is doing. And they are just tickled pink to be a part of it.
There is a popular illustration on giving, regarding a little boy and his sister. The sister needs a blood transfusion to live, and her little brother is the most suitable donor of her rare blood type. As he lays down on the stretcher beside his unconscious sister, the nurse inserts the needle that will give his sister the life giving blood she needs. A frightful experience for a little boy to say the least, but he never whimpers. After a few moments, the color in his Sisters face returns to a rosy red, as her blood supply is replenished and her situation pulls out of the critical stage. The little brothers face however is ashened and worried. The doctor comes in, checks his sisters pulse and blood pressure and announces that she will be fine. The little brother breathes a sigh of relief knowing that his sister will be fine, but still has a sullen look on his face. He turns to the doctor and asks. Doctor, how long until I die? The doctor realizing the what the little boy has been thinking now has a tear in his eye. "Your not going to die" You will be up and fine in about an hour. The little boy thought that he had been asked to give all of his blood to his sister, and that he would die in the process. Yet he gave just the same. Expecting nothing in return, in fact expecting that he would die, making the ultimate sacrifice, and he was willing to do it , perhaps without a smile on his face, but certainly a smile in his heart.
That is what pleases God. To give, sacrificially, without expecting something in return, and with a smile on our face or in our heart. Are you pleasing God with your giving.