By Guest Blogger Rev. Greg Gunn
The Philippians understood generosity! The Philippians practiced generosity! This early, struggling group of believers was aware of a great truth: God’s people are givers.
The Bible teaches that the apostle Paul was on a mission to share the good news of the gospel with others and to do the hard work of establishing churches. God blessed Paul’s work and it was rich with success, but the work was not always easy. Paul experienced tremendous challenges while serving the Lord. The scriptures teach that Paul endured beatings, shipwreck, hunger, and a myriad of other challenges. The needs of the mission were massive and Paul’s resources were often scant.
The good news is that God always has the way and one of the ways God provided for Paul was through the church at Philippi. The believers at Philippi came alongside Paul and supported and provided for him as he worked tirelessly to serve the Lord. In fact, so generous were those same believers that they continued their support of Paul’s work even after he departed and went on to serve elsewhere! The Philippians understood and practiced Christian generosity.
In Paul’s letter to the Philippians, he expresses deep gratitude for their obedience to the Lord and for their gifts. In chapter four of Philippians, Paul teaches a rock solid Biblical truth: giving to the Lord’s work is not just a benefit to the recipient, but it is a blessing to the giver and the giver can be sure that God will in turn provide their own needs.
And my God will supply every need of yours according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:19
This is one of the glorious mysteries of God’s economy – as we give cheerfully and generously to the Lord’s work, we are actually the ones who are blessed! God’s word promises that he will supply every one of my needs.
As I prayed through and pondered Philippians 4:14-19, two things came to my mind. First, I am reminded that Christian giving is not an expense; it is an investment – a great investment! All great investments have one thing in common: great returns. When I give generously and invest in the work of the Lord, I have the promise that God will take care of my needs and use my giving to accomplish His purposes. Second, I am reminded that Christian giving is an act of worship and a shout out of my Christian confession. My possessions (including my money) are not for my purposes, they are for HIS purposes. As a steward of the good things God has provided, it is an exciting journey for my family to give generously to things like our church, to missions, and to host orphans through New Horizons for Children.
God’s people are givers. Join the adventure of giving and watch God be faithful to His promise of supplying all your needs.
Rev. Gunn is a member of the NHFC board of directors and pastor at Providence Church in Spring Hill, Florida. He and his wife, Aimee, are looking forward to sharing their home with a host daughter from Ukraine this holiday season.