Questioning the Gift
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had someone had me money or a pledge card and apologetically say, “I know it’s not much…” or “I wish we could do more.” And then I do my best to explain that although every missionary would love a check that covers their entire missionary budget, we are BLESSED by any gift. We understand each gift of any amount comes from faith, love, and a belief that what God is doing in our ministry is worthwhile and needs to continue. Each monetary gift or partnership pledge is so much bigger than the amount that is attached to it.
I’m in Oregon for the week, leading up to my M. Ed. Commencement ceremony, and I was privileged to speak at a church in Redmond on Sunday. The congregation was warm, welcoming, and interested in what God was doing in Bolivia. While there, the pastor’s son, David, ended the service by praying for me and my ministry, saying, “Thanks, God, for bringing Emily here and reminding us that missions is for everyone.” As I left their house on Monday morning, he handed me an envelope. Inside was this:
As I got to my hotel in Portland Monday night and opened the envelope, I praised God that He would encourage a 16 yr old lover of Jesus, missions, and theater to come alongside a missionary with those same passions and together make an eternal difference in students from all over the world. Only God.
We’ve survived Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday. But I wonder why on earth does Giving Tuesday come after all the shopping deals of the century? Why, as a culture, do we give with our leftovers instead of our first fruits? If we gave first, faithfully following the amount God called us to give, would our embarrassment over the amount diminish in the light of His providence and plan? I don’t know, but I’d like to try. Care to join me?