“A fight is going on inside of me,” said an old man to his son. “It is a terrible fight between two wolves. One wolf is evil. He is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other wolf is good. He is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith. The same fight is going on inside of you.”The son thought on it for a minute and then asked, “Which wolf will win?”The old man replied simply, “The one you feed.”
And the Lord God commanded the [Adam], “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”
From the first moments of creation, there was a very simple plan: God is the Provider.
It couldn’t have been more clear to Adam and Eve. God placed them in the Garden and said, “Here is your home, a place made specifically for you, a place filled with everything you need to survive, where you’ll never want for anything.” Their physical needs were met during the day and their spiritual needs were met in the evening. God was willingly providing EVERYTHING they could possibly need.
But they wanted just a little bit more. And that’s when things got ugly…
They wanted just a little bit more of the fruit they couldn’t eat…just for some more wisdom. But ended up throwing away the very future they’d been promised.
From the beginning, God has been the Provider and we have been the Receivers. Everything should be so very simple…and so very perfect. But when we want just a little bit more, things always turn ugly.
- When we want just a little bit more stuff…we swipe our credit cards and promise to work it off later. But later doesn’t always come.
- When we want just a little bit more acceptance…we stretch our principles and values to fit in. But those kinds of friends never stick around.
- When we want just a little bit more money…we lie, cheat and backstab our way to a promotion. But eventually, our character is always revealed.
- When we want just a little bit more passion…we turn to the temporary excitement of an affair. But quickly discover that sex never equals love.
When we want just a little bit more, NOTHING will ever be enough.
1 Timothy 6:6-10
Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
Generosity breeds contentment. Greed spawns stress.
Generosity gives. Greed takes.
Generosity blesses. Greed hoards.
Generosity is selfless. Greed is selfish.
Generosity is godliness in practice. Greed is Satan in action.
One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed. People curse the one who hoards grain, but they pray God’s blessing on the one who is willing to sell. (Proverbs 11:24-26)
Normal people value THINGS over PEOPLE. But weird people value GENEROSITY over GREED.
Be weird… Be an alien in a foreign land… Be in the world but not of the world…
Be generous in a greedy world.
Thank you to EVERYONE who donated to our Yard Sale last weekend! It was a tremendous success and brought in more money than any other Yard Sale we’ve ever done… As we’ve added in a few IOU’s that have trickled in, we’ve now made just over $2,250!!!
BUT… WE STILL NEED TO RAISE APPROX. $6,000 for our summer trips. We’ve currently raised about $6,000 total, so we’re about halfway there. If you would like to support our students, there are TWO WAYS TO BE INVOLVED…
RENT-A-KID… You can hire a student (or several students) to come do work around your house/yard. They also babysit and do about anything you’d like. This year, our efforts have been hampered by all the rainfall so we’re hurrying to get as many jobs as we can! To hire a student, check out the board in the GCC foyer to get names there or see Adam Jones to connect with a student.
DONATION… You can also make an outright donation to our students. To do this, see Adam Jones, stop by the GCC Church Office or place a donation in the offering plate marked “Student Ministry Summer Trips.”
Thanks so much!
Oh… And just so you know what we’re working toward… The two trips we’re raising money for are MOVE in late June and KNOW Sweat in late July.
MOVE involves approx. 30 individuals and has been a life-changing experience for our students every summer for the past couple of decades.
KNOW Sweat involves approx. 20 individuals and will be a great introduction to missions as we spend a week serving families around the Xavier University area.
Just read these words by David Platt in his book, Radical, and felt like we all need to read them…
So what is the difference between someone who willfully indulges in sexual pleasures while ignoring the Bible on moral purity and someone who willfully indulges in the selfish pursuit of more and more material possessions while ignorning the Bible on caring for the poor? The difference is that one involves a social taboo in the church and the other involves the social norm in the church.
We look back on slave-owning churchgoers of 150 years ago and ask, “How could they have treated their fellow human beings that way?” I wonder if followers of Christ 150 years from now will look back at Christians in America today and ask, “How could they live in such big houses? How could they drive such nice cars and wear such nice clothes? How could they live in such affluence while thousands of children were dying because they didn’t have food and water? How could they go on with their lives as though the billions of poor didn’t even exist?”
Is materialism a blind spot in American Christianity today? More specifically, is materialism a blind spot in your Christianity today? Surely this is something we must uncover, for if our lives do not reflect radical compassion for the poor, there is reason to question just how effective we will be in declaring the glory of Christ to the ends of the earth. More pointedly, if our lives do not reflect radical compassion for the poor, there is reason to wonder if Christ is really in us at all.
You should definitely check this book out! (Amazon has it on sale for $5.49 right now)
I’ll be reviewing the entire book once I finish but I’m already prepared to suggest it as a must-read!
Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Almost four years ago, on September 4, 2006, we kicked off a worship gathering called Reset. Since that Labor Day, Reset has embraced students and young adults who are far from God, or searching for God, and worked tirelessly to bring them closer. Developing young leaders has been a core value since Day 1.
The road has been rough at times, but I’ve recently begun seeing glimpses of a light at the end of the tunnel. Leaders are emerging and lives are continuing to change.
I got a call just tonight from three young leaders who are initiating a plan to influence the future of the Kingdom in Brown County. They are excited to use their talents and time to lead in the Church, and they have significant talents to use, but that’s not what gets me the most excited.
Not only are they planning to use their gifts, they are planning to give their gifts right out of their pockets. I meet so many young disciples who are 100% committed to following God’s Will until they realize it’s going to change the way they eat, dress, and live. Touch the bank account and the commitment falls off a cliff. Money has always been a clear indicator of the heart’s condition. When I see young men dreaming of ways to give their money to the Church, I know God will use them in incredible ways.
If you want to see young leaders who are passionate about serving the Kingdom, come join us at Reset this weekend… Come see how God is raising young leaders right here in Brown County!
10:30 am in the GCC gym…