Why I Give

rootedchristI give.  Why?  This is why I give.

Today we are finishing up our look at Deuteronomy 16: 13-17, specifically at the concept of the Festival of the Booths (or Tabernacles) and the giving that is associated with it and other festivals.  We’ve talked about the nature of remembering God’s care and provision and we’ve talked about how that remembrance can and should cause us to be givers.  This text called the people to come and to give to the Lord, out of thankful hearts.

As I’ve read this week, I’ve just been drawn, over and over again to the beautiful dance between remembrance and giving.  When we remember just how much we have to be thankful for, then we are motivated to give.  When we remember what God has done for us, then we are motivated to give.  There’s an old song by the Christian musician Steven Curtis Chapman that I’ve always liked entitled Remember Your Chains.  The words I love so much are these:

There’s no one more thankful To sit at the table
Than the one who best remembers from his pain
And no heart loves greater
Than the one that is able
To recall the time when all it knew was shame

I know I keep saying this week, but when we truly remember what God has done for us, what God has saved us from, the difference He has made in our lives, then we can’t help but give.  I know that Jesus saved me.  I know I’m a different person, I was mean, hateful, arrogant, rude, truly awful (at least on the inside) before Jesus.  I’m different because of Him.  I remember who I was before Jesus.  And I can’t help but give all my life to Him because of what He has done.  I can’t help but tithe (giving 10% of our family income to the church) because of what He’s done for me (and for us).  I can’t help but follow Him, wherever He leads, because my life is His.

I remember hunger’s pain. And I am thankful to sit at the table.

And that is why I give.

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