Am I a cheerful giver? 2 Corinthians 9:7, says that God loves a cheerful giver. I am writing this to remind myself of the above verse, and you are welcomed to read my thought if you like. From time to time we need to be reminded of what God is really looking for.
Does He really need our money? He owns the entire universe; that means whatever we think we have is really His. He wants our heart, a heart of loving others just as He loves us that He rather died on the cross for our sins. Often times we see how others whom we help are blessed and benefit from our generosities; some received food, clothes on their back, a bed to sleep in, education, and even small capitals to start micro businesses. They are thankful and grateful, and that’s awesome! For you and me, the givers, we feel happy because we could help others and make their days a little brighter.
One story of a cheerful giver that took place so many years ago, but it still speaks to me loud and clear. My late father shared this story with me about 10 years. Over the years I have shared it with many people that I have met including at our church. It blesses my heart, every time. Let me re-tell it here so that others can cheer up and that our attitude toward giving will change.
At one occasion, a small group of pastors were visiting Medan, Indonesian for an event. There was a woman who desired to treat these pastors to a good meal. Not having much herself, she decided to sell her gold jewelry that she had been accumulating as savings so she could buy seafood and cook for them. The pastors were delighted to be invited to her humble home, and enjoyed the meal she prepared and served. Her mother and her sisters who were not saved laughed at her and taunted her because they knew too well from where she gotten to money to treat these pastors. To them it was an embarrassment for the family.
She lived in a village type house. These houses have no ceiling; from inside, you could see the pillars and beams and roof. Houses like these usually have either a cement floor or dirt floor. The roof could be made of attap or rusted aluminum. Why do I put so much attention to her house? Read on and you will find out why.
Not too long after that dinner, she noticed that some swallow birds started coming into her house and began to make nests. Swallow bird’s nests is highly valued and highly priced in the Chinese communities. It is an essential ingredient in a traditional Chinese soup. Bird nests hunters risk their lives to gather these edible bird’s nests in dark and steep caves. She and her siblings collected these nests and started selling them. Eventually the secret broke out that swallow birds make nests in her house, so investors started gaining interest in her humble house because they see profitable investment. Though she had no desire to sell her house, the investors were persistent. They offered her 4 times the value of her house. She took the offer and moved to new home.
The story doesn’t end here. What so intriguing is that after she moved to her new house, these swallow birds stop making nests in her old house but move in with her to her new house leaving the greedy investors with an empty old house.
According to my late father, the owner came to visit their church in Penang, Malaysia and shared what the Lord has done for her. Glory be to God! So, when we give do we give with cheerful heart? What about you? Do you have stories like these to share? Please share it with me; I love reading and listening to testimonies.
Ruby Tan is a Certified Profit First Professional who specialized in helping non-profit organizations manage their finances and increase their reserve funds.