Andrew Carnegie's wife was so fond of classical music that at the end of every year, she insisted that Andrew pay any outstanding debts incurred by the New York Philharmonic Symphony. Finally, Andrew became weary and faced the symphony's board of directors with this challenge: "I can't keep doing this year in and year out. You need to go out and raise half of the money needed, and I will give the other half."
Within a few days the board members called him with good news. "Mr. Carnegie, we have met your request. We have half of the money we need."
Our motivation for giving to God's work should be to praise, worship, and honor Him.
Carnegie was pleased, applauded their efforts, and said he would fulfill his end of the agreement. Before he hung up the telephone, he asked, "Where did you get the other half?"
There was a pause and then the answer: "Mrs. Carnegie!"
Some people have a spirit of generosity, and that generosity is the fuel that keeps them going each day. In Luke, Jesus reminds us of a simple, yet basic Truth: "Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you" (Luke 6:38). If we are stingy and withhold our tithes meant to fuel God's work in the world, then we can expect the same in return.
When you do give, make sure that you are motivated by God and not guilt or a desire to somehow repay God for your salvation—a self-righteous, foolish, and impossible endeavor. Rather, let your motivation be to praise, worship, and honor God, for no price tag can be placed on Christ's death on the cross. It was there God gave us His greatest gift—salvation through His Son. Therefore, ask God to teach you how to give generously, as it was given to you.
Prayer: Lord, You are my example of generosity; show me how to be a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:7). May my giving honor You and bless others! I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed" (Proverbs 11:25).