"Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the Lord of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house."
Churlish souls stint their contributions to the ministry and missionary operations, and call such saving good economy; little do they dream that they are thus impoverishing themselves. Their excuse is that they must care for their own families, and they forget that to neglect the house of God is the sure way to bring ruin upon their own houses. Our God has a method in providence by which he can succeed our endeavours beyond our expectation, or can defeat our plans to our confusion and dismay; by a turn of his hand he can steer our vessel in a profitable channel, or run it aground in poverty and bankruptcy. It is the teaching of Scripture that the Lord enriches the liberal and leaves the miserly to find out that withholding tendeth to poverty.
In a very wide sphere of observation, I have noticed that the most generous Christians of my acquaintance have been always the most happy, and almost invariably the most prosperous. I have seen the liberal giver rise to wealth of which he never dreamed; and I have as often seen the mean, ungenerous churl descend to poverty by the very parsimony by which he thought to rise. Men trust good stewards with larger and larger sums, and so it frequently is with the Lord; he gives by cartloads to those who give by bushels. Where wealth is not bestowed the Lord makes the little much by the contentment which the sanctified heart feels in a portion of which the tithe has been dedicated to the Lord.
Selfishness looks first at home, but godliness seeks first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, yet in the long run selfishness is loss, and godliness is great gain. It needs faith to act towards our God with an open hand, but surely he deserves it of us; and all that we can do is a very poor acknowledgment of our amazing indebtedness to his goodness.
(From Morning and Evening, October 26-Morning by C.H. Spurgeon)
A Note to My Congregation
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ:
I know that by man’s accounting we took a big risk by choosing to sponsor an upcoming church plant, even when our finances are stretched so thin and the money going out is far surpassing the money coming in! But see what the Word has to say. And see what God laid on Bro. Spurgeon’s heart. Does this not speak to our situation? Does not Haggai 1:9 put some assurance that when we give and give generously as a church to what God has commanded us, that He will always take care of us? Did not Jesus say that if we are faithful with little, we can be trusted to be faithful with much?
Take heart, Boone’s Creek Baptist Church! When we voted to sponsor this church that will be birthed to reach many for Christ who have yet to be reached, we cast our lot with the Lord by saying, “Lord, I don’t know how, I don’t know where—but we know You! May we be faithful in our want, knowing that you will bless us in ways we cannot foresee nor anticipate.”
1We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, 2for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. 3For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, 4begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints— 5and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us. 6Accordingly, we urged Titus that as he had started, so he should complete among you this act of grace. 7But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you— see that you excel in this act of grace also (2 Corinthians 8:1-7, ESV).