for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. [2 corinthians 8:2]
what’s tempting to do when you face affliction, causing you pain or suffering? be honest. try to stop or control the affliction at all cost? ignore the affliction because it seems too much to bear? pick up a beer or glass of wine to numb the pain?
these are inevitably indicators we aren’t resting in the finished work of Christ. we are meant to glorify God in our afflictions, an outward expression: praising His name, speaking to His goodness regardless of circumstance, praying for others, making disciples and giving our resources.
what a joy to be in God’s presence amidst affliction. what a joy to give generously. what a joy to put others before yourself.
what hinders you from being in God’s presence and giving abundantly?
but who am i, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand… Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a temple for your Holy Name comes from your hand, and all of it belongs to you. [1 chronicles 29:14,16]
~ natalie schmidt