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Show it to God - Part One: Giving

“Take care! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired, for then you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. When you give a gift to a beggar, don’t shout about it as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you in all earnestness, they have received all the reward they will ever get. But when you do a kindness to someone, do it secretly—don’t tell your left hand what your right hand is doing. And your Father, who knows all secrets, will reward you.”

Matthew 6:1-4 Living Bible (TLB)

When Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount, He spoke to the multitudes of many things. He taught them how to live, love and pray. He shared how they would be blessed through focusing on God the Father, while teaching that seeking Him first would lead to the abundant life God designed us to desire according to His will. Somewhere along the way, the message got turned around and His children not only stopped seeking His righteousness and receiving our needs through His provisions, we began to ask (even pray) for the things we want and waiting for Him to supply what we were requesting for our own personal desires. We sometimes give in exchange for what God has promised us we will receive, rather than from hearts that show compassion for others. Some even want other people to think God is blessing them because of their ability to give more and they make sure it is well known how much they give.

For those believers who put on a show of piety through generosity for people to see, remember God is also watching the show and examines the heart of the person displaying this behavior for motive and intent. While being commanded to share our blessings, we are also told not to let even our left hand know what our right hand is doing. Anything other than this is sin and no one can forgive sin but God. So again we come full circle to trying to give to God what He really wants: our hearts to be in the right place. We are to be seeking His approval and not that of man.

The folks we try to impress cannot bless us with anything but inflation of pride, which the enemy loves to use to mess us up in our walk with God. The people we help are blessed by our benevolence and making it known to others by placing how much we have done on front-page blast doesn't bless them any more or less than keeping it to ourselves. Since God sees and knows everything we do, let's just show it to Him. He is our Rewarder. Nobody else needs to know the good that we do for others. As Christians, we are to demonstrate through our actions our obedience to God's command of loving others. God can see all we do and He knows how much we love. It is He from whom we want to hear: "Well done, good and faithful servant."

. . . . We are not trying to please people but God, who tests our hearts.

1 Thessalonians 2:4 NIV

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