Giving with Thanksgiving
by Craig von Buseck
Throughout the year, we face anxiety about money. If you are tight in your finances, you may be anxious about meeting your budget. If you have a lot of money, you may be concerned about your taxes—or about keeping the money you have. But the apostle Paul told the Philippian church to “be anxious for nothing” (Philippians 4:6a, NASB).
That may seem like an impossible command. But when it comes to finances, I believe the way to carry out this biblical command is found in how we think about money and the place it has in our lives.
Since money is central to everything we do in life, it’s important that we understand what the Bible says about finances in the life of the believer. Here are some principles for helping to manage your money from a biblical perspective.
Principle #1: Recognize that everything we have is a gift from God. We are simply stewards of the things He entrusts into our care.
“The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him” (Psalm 24:1, NLT).
“His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much’” (Matthew 25:21, ESV).
Principle #2: If you place your trust in God, He will meet your needs.
“My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19, NKJV).
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” (Psalm 23:1, NASB).
Principle #3: If you put God first, He will bring blessing in your life.
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matthew 6:33, ESV).
“Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with good wine” (Proverbs 3:9-10, NLT).
Principle #4: Whatever you sow, in due season you will reap—if you sow with the right motives.
“While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest . . . shall not cease” (Genesis 8:22, ESV).
“Whatever one sows, that will he also reap” (Galatians 6:7b, ESV).
“Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return” (Luke 6:38, NASB).
Principle #5: If you ask, God will give you wisdom on how to invest in profitable areas for future increase.
“She considers a field and buys it; from her profits she plants a vineyard (Proverbs 31:16, NKJV).
“Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents . . . So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them’” (Matthew 25:16, 20, NKJV).
Principle #6: Money in itself isn’t evil—it is our attitude toward money that makes it good or evil.
“For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows” (1 Timothy 6:10, NLT).
“Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, ‘I will never fail you. I will never abandon you’” (Hebrews 13:5, NLT).
Principle #7: Money is a tool—and we must guard our heart against making it an idol.
“Those who love money will never have enough. How meaningless to think that wealth brings true happiness!” (Ecclesiastes 5:10, NLT)
“Then he said, ‘Beware! Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own’” (Luke 12:15, NLT).
Principle #8: If you are a generous person—not only with your money but also with your time and expertise—you will receive God’s blessing in many areas of your life.
By sowing into others of your money, time and talent, you are setting yourself up for an eventual harvest of God’s blessings.
“He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully” (2 Corinthians 9:6, NKJV).
“He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord, and He will pay back what he has given” (Proverbs 19:17, NKJV).
“Whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward” (Matthew 10:42, NKJV).
Principle #9: Work hard and you will eventually bear the fruit of your labor.
“In all labor there is profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty” (Proverbs 14:23, NASB).
“He who tills his land will have plenty of food, but he who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty” (Proverbs 28:19, NASB).
Principle #10: When we give cheerfully—with thanksgiving—God is pleased, and He blesses our endeavors. This brings us back to the second half of the verse from Philippians chapter 4 mentioned above. Every promise in Scripture has a condition that we must fulfill through our action and attitude. Here is the condition:
“But in everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:6b, NASB).
But then Paul gives us the promise in the following verse:
“And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7, NASB).
During this season of Thanksgiving, may this promise give you the peace of God—in your finances, and in every area of your life.
Dr. Craig von Buseck is Editor of Digital Content for Inspiration.org. His latest book, Seven Keys to Hearing God’s Voice, is available through Ramcastle Press. Learn more at vonbuseck.com.
We’d like to hear from you. Please share your comments below or like us on your Facebook page. Be sure to check back each month for more articles and products available at your local Christian bookstore.