Archive for the ‘Giving’ Tag

Once Greedy, Now Generous!

“Once Greedy, Now Generous!” – Melvin McKee, Jr.

Bible Verse: 2 Cor 8:1, 2 Cor 9:6-15


The grace of God works deeply into us so that it can also work out of us to benefit others. Grace
hoarded is grace squandered; in fact, it may be grace misunderstood or even unexperienced. God’s
gracious gifts are meant to be held loosely with generosity, not held onto tightly with greed. Our
motivation for living with generosity comes from God’s exceeding generosity to us in giving us the
fullness of His Son despite our total spiritual bankruptcy. Because we have been given the eternal
riches of His glory in Christ Jesus, we are compelled to live generously, not reluctantly, and with joy
and gratitude.

Theological Theme:

God-Father-Son-Holy-Spirit already owns all that we have. He has called us to be stewards of the wealth He entrusts to us.

Christ Connection:

In Jesus Christ, we have both a model and a motivation for generosity. Because God has been
merciful and generous to us by giving us His Son, we are empowered to be merciful and generous
toward others.

Missional Application:

God gives us wealth in order that we might share it with others in need, not out of a sense of guilt or
obligation but cheerfully and willingly.

Photo Compliments:

The Spirit of Truth and Generosity!


Audio – Part A: 23 min


Audio – Part B:  28 min


Audio – Full Message:


Bible Verses: Acts 4:32Acts 5:11

“Generosity should be a defining characteristic of the church because God is generous. The Father gave His Son. The Son gave His life. The Father and the Son gave the Spirit. And the Spirit gives the followers of Christ hearts of generosity. The Spirit works through these hearts to bring unity to the body of Christ through their loving support for one another. Greed is contrary to who God is and invites His judgment. The Holy Spirit of God helps us distinguish between generous and greedy giving.”

“Generosity is a fruit of God’s grace, something that an individual
should feel compelled to do from their own hearts. While in one way this understanding liberates us from any legalism around giving, it simultaneously heightens our expectations for giving. Because generosity flows from the heart, it is a tangible way of seeing the condition of the heart. This is why Jesus said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matt. 6:21).

Theological Theme:
Sin in the Church must not stand in the way of the gospel’s expansion.

Christ Connection:
In obedience to the Holy Spirit’s prompting, the early Christians shared their resources and gave generously to those in need, just as Jesus gave up heavenly riches to share His inheritance with all who trust in Him. But Ananias and Sapphira’s deceptive action was a sin against the church and against the Spirit. The Spirit distinguishes between giving that is from a heart of generosity and giving that is greedy and deceitful.

“Jesus serves as our model for radical giving and the Holy Spirit enables us to follow in His steps.”

“In following Jesus, we’re invited to do the same, not clinging to what we have but giving it away, becoming a servant, and allowing God to multiply it for His good and glory in His church and in the world around us. The Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives should inspire such radical generosity, transforming our hearts to mirror Jesus’ own so that we don’t cling to what’s “ours” by rights but give it away to those in need.

Missional Application:
God the Father, through His Holy Spirit, calls us to show our unity with other believers, always being generous and honest as a reflection of Christ’s truth and love.

Photo Compliments:



Let’s Get TWO-gether With Jesus And Go!, pt.3

Two by Two Going Out With Jesus”

In this last and year-end message in a series about discerning God’s vision for His congregation at New Life Fellowship of Baltimore. MD., we continue asking “How is Jesus speaking to us RIGHT NOW through these scriptures and directing us in His mission locally?”

This message of God’s Good News continues to get very specific about what participation with Christ looks like for us in this world! It asks and discerns: Where and with whom do we begin? How do we address healing in our day as we proclaim Jesus? How should we steward Jesus’ money, and how will we live in Jesus’ peace – on mission with him – as sinners in THIS broken world?

The message can be summarized in this quote:

“There is no way to peace along the way of safety. For peace must be dared, it is itself the great venture, and can never be safe. Peace is the opposite of security… To look for guarantees is to want to protect oneself. Peace means giving oneself completely to God’s commandment, wanting no security, but in faith and obedience laying down the destiny of the nations in the hand of Almighty God, not trying to direct it for selfish purposes. Battles are won, not with weapons, but with God. They are won when the way leads to the cross.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer, 1934 [Renate Bethge’s Dietrich Bonhoeffer: A Brief Life]

Come check it out and walk with us!

Gift of Giving

I was part of an amazing supernatural experience a few weeks ago that took place in my office.

I have a client who lost her husband a few years ago.  They had been in my office several times over several years and I felt like I lost a dear friend when he passed away.  As he declined in health we discussed God, heaven, and other topics, and grew close together in the process.  We even found some time to discuss financial matters when needed.  Since his passing I’ve had the opportunity to continue building our relationship with his widow as I administer their Trust account.

Back in 1996 her husband fell over from a heart attack on the golf course.  There happened to be a young deputy sheriff nearby who ran over and through mouth-to-mouth resuscitation was able to bring him back to life.  They were forever grateful.  The young deputy was forever humble.  For years they tried to give him a gift to express their thanks for the extra years they were able to spend together and he refused.  Said he was just doing his job.  Said their thanks was plenty enough.

My client being the determined lady that she is just couldn’t let it go and asked for my assistance to locate him.  She was amazed and thankful when I came up with his address (where would we be without Google?).  She sought my guidance about pressing him on what he may need, and how we might structure the gift.  I offered my counsel and she went to his home and arranged lunch with him and his family.  She once again expressed her thanks and asked what she could do, now in honor of her deceased husband to thank him.  This time he said he’d think about it.

She arranged an appointment with him in my office to discuss what she might do for him.  We got together and he expressed how hard it was, once again, to accept anything for this event that happened in his early twenties.  I was impressed with his humble attitude.  He went on to say that he had sought counsel from his pastor and discussed it with his wife and came up with only three present needs.  He was no longer working on the force and had taken a teaching job while he pursued a degree from seminary.  He originally thought his tuition was covered by another source, but when he discovered it wasn’t, at his pastor’s urging he agreed to meet.

His needs were simple.  Cover his future tuition at seminary and what he had already paid; a replacement vehicle (used, not new) since his was in need of repair; and their mortgage on a modest home.  He once again indicated anything she gave him would be helpful.

My client told him she wasn’t going to do everything, but put a significant number on the table that she would give.  Our recipient friend didn’t know what to say.  My eyes started to tear up.  She looked at me and asked how we go about doing this.  I suggested that since there was enough we should cover the tuition and used vehicle purchase, and apply the remainder to the mortgage.  Once again, he didn’t know what to say, but the gratitude in his eyes said it all.  I couldn’t help but say this is a direct gift from God and he has provided my client with the opportunity to participate in that gift.  They readily agreed.  My eyes teared even more.  I couldn’t hold them back.  I had been in the midst of greatness.

When the Holy Spirit moves us to participate in what Jesus is doing, it’s an amazing thing.  When we simply observe as a bystander what Jesus is doing we sense somehow that it is supernatural.  God loves his children, and at times chooses to provide for their needs in an amazing way.  We can’t always answer why him versus her, but we can always trust in his love, and when moved to participate, provide and experience the gift of giving.

~ by Craig Kuhlman

%d bloggers like this: