I love the verse in Sirach where it says, “My child, conduct your affairs with humility, and you will be loved more than a giver of gifts.” This is an interesting concept for those of us who think a stewardship way of life is all about the giving of gifts. When we start to think that all we are called to do is give for the sake of giving, we have missed the point.
We are called to be gracious givers. We are called to allow the Jesus in us to encounter the Jesus in others. Humility does not mean that we hide away after we give, but we give in a way that has less to do with us and more to do with the one in whose name we give. Our world needs philanthropy and generosity, but it needs Jesus even more. We want to be good examples to others of how to be generous, not because we want them to be like us but like Jesus.
Give all things with a gracious heart and disposition. Do not take any credit for that generosity but instead let it point to Jesus. After all, it is Jesus who calls us to a mature faith where we answer the call every day regardless of the cost. Without that maturity and answering the call, would we really be driven to be generous givers? Knowing that left to our own devices we would probably not be very successful as a giver of gifts should make us very humble anyway.
—Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS