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I Like Giving Thanks

I Like Giving
Part 4
I Like Giving Thanks

Luke 15:11-24 “To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story: “A man had two sons. 12 The younger son told his father, ‘I want my share of your estate now before you die.’ So his father agreed to divide his wealth between his sons. 13 “A few days later this younger son packed all his belongings and moved to a distant land, and there he wasted all his money in wild living. 14 About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve. 15 He persuaded a local farmer to hire him, and the man sent him into his fields to feed the pigs. 16 The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything. 17 “When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger! 18 I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, 19 and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired servant.”’ 20 “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. 21 His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son.[b]’ 22 “But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger and sandals for his feet. 23 And kill the calf we have been fattening. We must celebrate with a feast, 24 for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began.”

2 Roadblocks to Gratitude.

Entitlement

Verse 11 “give me MY share of the estate”

2. Impatience

The Roadway Back to Gratitude.

Recognize

verse 14 “After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. 17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death!”

Do you recognize any areas where you might be ungrateful?

Financial or material
b. Relational
c. Circumstantial

Repent

Luke 7:47 “I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.”

When we realize how great of a sinner we are and how much God has loved us anyway and how little we actually deserve that’s when we can be broken and gratitude can begin to spill out at Jesus feet.

Return

verse 18  “I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.”

The key to a grateful heart is just to return every single blessing to God in the form of praise.

Mark Batterson “Every blessing that we don’t turn to praise turns to pride.”

I Like Giving Systematically

I Like Giving Part 3
I Like Giving Systematically

Giving is not something we do, generous is who we are….

2 Corinthians 9:7 “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

3 different ways that people tend to give.

1. Spontaneously

2. Sporadically

3. Sparingly

2 Corinthians 9:6 “Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.”

The way the Bible teaches us that there is better way to give. Not spontaneously or sporadically or sparingly but that we should give…

SYSTEMATICALLY

4 reasons for becoming a tither.

1. Tithing shows that God is first.

Matthew 22:37 “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment.”

Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”

2 Corinthians 8:9 “You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.”

2 Corinthians 8:8 “Since you excel in so many ways—in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us[c]—I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving. 8 I am not commanding you to do this. But I am testing how genuine your love is by comparing it with the eagerness of the other churches.

2. Tithing causes me to grow.

Malachi 3:10 "Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test! 11 Your crops will be abundant, for I will guard them from insects and disease.[a] Your grapes will not fall from the vine before they are ripe,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 12 “Then all nations will call you blessed, for your land will be such a delight,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”

a. When we give we see God’s power at work

b. When we give God stretches our hearts

3. Tithing positions me to receive God’s blessings.

Psalm 25:12-13 “Where is the man who fears the Lord? God will teach him how to choose the best.13 He shall live within God’s circle of blessing, and his children shall inherit the earth.”

Galatians 6:7 “Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant.”

2 Corinthians 9:6 “Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop.”

4. Tithing helps to meet the needs of others through the local church

Malachi 3:10 “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse… so that there may be food in my house…”

Genesis 12:2-3 “I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.”

How do I learn to give systematically?

1. Start with the tithe.

2. Gradually raise your level of generosity





I Like Giving Generously

I Like Giving
Part 2
I Like Giving Generously

Giving is not something we do, generous is who we are….

2 Corinthians 9:7 “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

4 things that happen when giving is just something we do

1. When giving is just something we do we might give begrudgingly

2 Corinthians 9:5 “I want you to give willingly not grudgingly.”

2. When giving is just something we do we might give reluctantly

2 Corinthians 9:7 “You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.”

MSG “I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.

3. When giving is just something we do we might give selfishly

Matthew 6:2 “Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. 2 When you give to someone in need, don’t do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get. 3 But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. 4 Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.”

4. When giving us just something we do we might give conditionally

2 Corinthians 8:1-12 “And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. 2 In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. 3 For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, 4 they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. 5 And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us. 6 So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. 7 But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you[a]—see that you also excel in this grace of giving. 8 I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich. 10 And here is my judgment about what is best for you in this matter. Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so. 11 Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. 12 For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.”

4 things that happen when generous is who we are…

1. When generous is who we are we will give joyfully.

Verse 2 “ In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity.”

Acts 20:35 “It’s more blessed to give than to receive.”

Proverbs 21:26 “the Godly love to give.”

2. When generous is who we are we will give selflessly 

verse 5 “And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God's will”

3. When generous us who we are we will give willingly 

verse 12 “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable…"

4. When generous is who we are we will give thankfully

Romans 12:1 (NCV) “So brothers and sisters, since God has shown us great mercy, I beg you to offer your lives as a living sacrifice to him. Your offering must be only for God and pleasing to him, which is the spiritual way for you to worship.”

Psalm 40:2 “He lifted me out of the pit of destruction, out of the sticky mud. He stood me on a rock and made my feet steady. 3 He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God.”

1 Chronicles 29:14 “But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.”

2 Corinthians 9:10-11 “Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.”