By Robin Stanley
Have you ever been the recipient of a gracious, unearned gift simply because you had need? I have, many times over. One of the most memorable came from a stranger, the owner of a moving company.
Nothing You Have Is Yours
“Miss Stanley, I’m sending four men instructed to finish packing, wrapping, and moving your entire household of belongings. They’re not to leave until they’re done, and they are to charge you no more than $350.”
That was double the manpower for less than half of what each two-man team would cost for the day. Through tears, I began to protest. “I can’t let you do that.”
Mr. K.’s generous response set me up with life-giving insight. “Yes you can. Because nothing I have is mine, and nothing you have is yours. It all belongs to God, no matter how much or how little. What we’re given, whether belongings, time, money, or other resources, we’re given to redistribute, and I know you will.”
Mr. K. was training his young workers (and me!) to serve others in humility, preparing us to take Christ into communities, redistributing our resources to care for those in need. Mr. K. acknowledged his role was difficult, citing some lean seasons when he shook his fists at God. But he continued on, committed to serving the people God brought to him. “After all,” he said, “this company isn’t mine. It’s his to do with as he will.”
Give from All You’ve Been Given
Today’s verses introduce us to believers who, like Mr. K., understood sincere giving. I’m struck by their commitment to Christ and to each other, and the example of Barnabas the Levite who sold his land and left his profit for the disciples to distribute. No fanfare. No grandstanding. He simply gave from his contrite heart, bent toward God by grace to care for the needs of his flock. “And there were no needy persons among them.”
Where will your grace-filled, responsive, and compassionate heart lead you to give today? Will you toss a few coins in an offering plate? Or will you allow the Lord to open your eyes toward brothers and sisters in need and give from all you’ve been given?
Robin Stanley is a voice for the exploited and a life coach who invites people into the presence of God. She is also a writer, speaker, publishing consultant, and aunt based in Lexington, South Carolina.