"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work." -2 Corinthians 9:6-8
Have you ever heard an offering message and then felt guilty, so you gave? Unfortunately, this happens in many churches. I feel blessed to be a part of a church that talks strictly about not giving when you feel reluctant or obligated, but instead giving from a cheerful and abundant heart. The Bible speaks frankly about this in the verse in 2 Corinthians 9:6-8.
But, does this relate to finances only?
Certainly, the scripture above has been used in many offering messages. But what about the rest of our lives? How are we to give of our time, and our talents? We have to work, yes. But does this verse apply here? I believe it does.
Whenever we feel like we have to do something, we are living under a yoke. Would this be God's yoke? Probably not. "For my yoke is easy and my burden is light," it says in Matthew 11:30. So then work, or whatever we put our hands to, when viewed correctly means we take a step back and we do it to the best of our ability -- because we want to, not because we have to.
Ultimately, we never have to do anything, although there may be consequences for our lack of action. But our work becomes blessed when we submit it to God. We develop an attitude of joy and gratitude about whatever we're doing with our time and talents to glorify God. Our work becomes a gift we give to others. I know this won't happen perfectly every time, but it's definitely something to work toward. Making this a habit in our lives means we're not under any yoke but God's, and that makes our lives so much easier.
Are you living in freedom in whatever you do?