You are wise to set money aside weekly in church.
Today's Bible passage is still from 1 Corinthians, as was last week's, but now we are in the last chapter. Paul is winding up his letter with final comments and greetings. In the first five verses, Paul is giving them a specific plan to set aside money weekly in church toward the needs of the saints in Jerusalem.
"Now about the collection for God's people: Do what I told the Galatian churches to do. On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made. Then, when I arrive, I will give letters of introduction to the men you approve and send them with your gift to Jerusalem. If it seems advisable for me to go also, they will accompany me." (1 Corinthians 16:1-5)
Paul has suggested this plan already in chapters 8 and 9, as we saw last time, so they could become generous givers in the name of our Lord. But now he gives them practical steps so that there will be no fuss or begging to collect money at that time. Simply the delivery details to be worked out.
To set money aside weekly in church is really is an excellent plan. It teaches believers to become regular givers.
We all tend to forget if we don't make it a habit.
We also need to consult with our own spirit, and a spouse, if married, to determine how much we can give cheerfully. God loves a cheerful, willing giver. The amount is up to you. Whatever portion you might give grudging... is not a gift in God's eyes.
Wait! Let me give you clue to a great surprise. When you start giving regularly you will experience something wonderful. An emotion that is very pleasurable - just a small token from the Lord of the larger rewards He will present to you in Heaven!
Even if someone else does your bookkeeping for you, set aside a certain time each week - before Sunday - to check and see how much new income you gained through the week. Decide whether you are going to give a certain amount, or perhaps a percentage of your income, and prepare that in a small envelop to take to church on Sunday and put in the offering. (Some churches provide offering envelopes for you).
If your paycheck only comes every two weeks, then you'll want to set aside time bi-weekly to assess how much you can set aside as a church offering - but in your heart, giving it to the Lord.
If your salary is deposited into your account just once a month, and it is always the same, you may have the easiest time of all once you've decided how much to give to the Lord each month.
All right, if you live from hand to mouth... you may end up giving more sporadically. In fact, you may need some of those gifts that others are setting aside to give to the Lord. And you have a better chance of being given some of those gifts if you become a part of a living, and godly Christian church.
When the church elders or administrative officers see how much comes in regularly they are able to budget for basic needs for operating the church, and also for missions and benevolent giving.
When I first became a working girl after high school I was only interested in giving to missions. I felt that others could support the church, but my money should go to spreading the gospel. Later on I learned that supporting the church is also God's will. Instead of dividing my offering, I doubled it, so that I could do both. God has blessed that and just given me a desire to give much more... whenever He blesses me with more than my basic living budget. That is happening more often now!
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