Love and Giving: Overcoming the Spirit of Selfishness during the Holidays
When was the last time you gave of yourself freely, not expecting anything in return, with an attitude that demonstrated willingness and excitement to give? God never intended for you to live as an island, and keep what you have been blessed with for yourself. Whether it is with your time, gifts, talents or financial resources; loving others means giving to them. God will bless and increase you when you purpose in your heart to be a blessing to others. Your love for people is demonstrated in your willingness to give.
Walking in love is the greatest commandment from God (Matthew 22:34-40). The Bible says that God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, Jesus (John 3:16). God is constantly giving of Himself as an expression of who He is—LOVE (1 John 4:16). Therefore, it is important that you and I develop a consciousness of love and act on it by giving to others, just as God gives to us.
Romans 5:5 says that “the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit”. This means that you have the capacity to love others with the love of God. If we find it hard to give our possessions, resources or time to others? Then we need to begin to meditate on the love of God and let His spirit of love develop in our hearts. When you develop a love walk and regularly exercise the spirit of love by giving to people around you, it will become almost second nature. God intends and desires for love to be the distinguishing characteristic of those who believe in Him.
Being selfish does not only mean refusing to give freely of your material possessions. It can also mean being selfish with your time, love and friendship. The moment you choose to withhold from others when it is in your power to bless them out of your increase and under the direction of the Holy Spirit, you are being selfish. When you make the choice to restrict or limit your giving, you restrict what God can do in your own life.
One reason people maintain a position of selfishness is the fear of being taken advantage of. But when we allow the love of God to rise up in our hearts, it will cast fear out. Selfishness will only keep you trapped in lack and hinder you from increasing. But when you allow yourself to become a distribution center in whatever area God directs you, you keep the flow of blessings coming your way. 2 Corinthians 9:7 says, “Let each one [give] as he has made up his own mind and purposed in his heart, not reluctantly or sorrowfully or under compulsion, for God loves (He takes pleasure in, prizes above other things, and is unwilling to abandon or to do without) a cheerful (joyous, “prompt to do it”) giver [whose heart is in his giving]” (The Amplified Bible).
Selfishness separates you from God’s provision for your life. Choosing to hoard the blessings God has given you is the opposite of love, no matter what the excuse may be. From the simplest act of caring, whether it is providing monetary or tangible resources for someone, or giving your time, wisdom or insight to someone else, the spirit of giving and love will not only allow God to meet someone else’s need through you, but it will also release God’s hand to meet your needs.
This Christmas season let’s open our hearts to the possibilities of how God will use us! Let’s be willing to be a blessing to others even if it means giving something that is precious to us. We can rest assured that when we obey God in this area, He will bring it back to us more abundantly.
Don’t be stingy, pass the blessings on. You will expose your life to tremendous blessings from God because you choose His way—love.