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What does it mean to become a generous Christian? It involves our time, spiritual gifts, spiritual growth, sharing resources and being a witness to others. When we love the Lord with all our heart, soul mind and strength then it will be reflected in these ways in our lives.
In 2017 our theme is “Becoming Generous Christians” because when you are generous you pour yourself into your relationship with Christ, use your time and spiritual gifts to serve others here in the body of Christ.You become joyful about sharing your faith with others and bringing God’s tithe to him each week.
Today we dive deeper into what it means to be a generous Christian.We need to look at some of the problems that prevent us from being generous Christians in our tithes and sacrificial gifts.
Matthew 6:19; Luke 12:15
We are in a series entitled “Becoming Generous Christians.We will cover a lot of ground in this series.Last Sunday we considered how debt hinders us from being free to give joyfully and sacrificially.Some of the obstacles that lead to debt are having a miser mentality, using credit cards to pay for stuff you can’t afford, spending to keep up with others and trying get rich quick schemes that usually thrust you further into debt.When we are a prisoner to debt it sucks all the joy out of our lives and kills generosity.
This morning we will consider how to make wise spending decisions so that we can be generous Christians in our giving to God’s church and helping others.
We are continuing our series “Becoming Generous Christians.”For this to happen it requires a heart transformation.When you give yourself to Jesus as your Savior and Lord you receive a new heart.Paul says our old nature is put away and we receive a new nature from the Lord.With a new heart comes a shift in our priorities and how we live.It impacts our relationships, our use of time, using our spiritual gifts to build each other up and how we manage the financial resources that God gives you.
Everyone gets the same amount of time in a day. What do you do with your time? The Apostle Paul urges Christians to use their time wisely since we don’t know when time will end and Jesus will return. There are many people who still need to know Christ. We are to manage our time wisely, to serve Christ and bring honor to him. Along the way you may need a time out to renew and refresh. Remember that time is a gift that you never get back. Let us manage wisely the time of our lives.
The disciples of Jesus only asked the Lord to teach them one thing. It wasn’t how to heal people or how to do miracles. They asked Jesus to teach them to pray. Maybe they noticed how often Jesus slipped away to be with the Father. This message looks at what Jesus taught his disciples about prayer. It is a great gift that every believer can use every day.
Just before ascending back to heaven Jesus gives his final instructions to the disciples. These men are commissioned by Jesus to go into the world to make disciples. There is an urgency to this mission. Every day people die without Christ and step into eternity forever separated from God. Time is short and we need to take advantage of every opportunity we have to share the gospel with people. As we go the Holy Spirit empowers us and goes ahead of us to prepare people to be receptive to the gospel. There is no greater privilege than helping a person give their life to Christ.
Did you get dressed before leaving home today? That’s what Paul is addressing in this passage in Ephesians. He urges Christians to put on the armor that God provides to us. It is necessary to wear this armor in light of the spiritual warfare in which Christians are engaged. Satan seeks to destroy people. He works to render Christians ineffective. So having God’s armor is vital to serving Christ. Be sure you get dressed with God’s armor as well as your clothing before leaving home. God gives us everything we need to live for Him and serve others.