I've you have cable or internet subscription services, most of you have heard of the show "Hoarders." Devised on the disorder of a person or persons who collect things and keep them without knowing why until it literally piles up in their homes to overflowing, you can walk around without crawling over stuff. They save everything throwing nothing away and keep adding to it until there is no way to live in their home any longer. It becomes an obsession.
While working on my Bible Study yesterday I was learning about Israel's sin of when everything was going right in their nation. So right in fact that there was so much abundance, people were able to purchase additional land, houses and animals because of God's hand of blessings in their lives for living their lives righteously at one time. They had so much, they didn't know what to do with it. They had what some might call disposable income.
Do you know what disposable income is? It's when you have so much money, you can literally buy anything you want and you'll still have money left. But our attitudes can change when more money comes our way. When we get that promotion we've wanted for so long, or that bonus that is way more than you expected. What do we do when we find ourselves living with abundance of wealth?
It can change you if you're not careful. It can turn you into a hoarder.
I am reminded as I write this by Jim Carrey's character in Bruce Almighty who is given the powers of God since he claims he can do a much better job at it than God can. And when God calls him on what he's been doing since he has been endowed with the ultimate power, Bruce confesses, "I've been righting a few wrongs in my own life."
Isn't that just like us when we try to justify our surplus in any area of our life. "We believe we need to take care of a few things lacking in our own life. A few wants needs to be addressed first. But be careful, those blessings God has so richly blessed you with, can suddenly dry up if your attitude isn't right. Sometimes God can withholds those promotions or raises because He knows we would get crazy with it.
Often times we find ourselves looking at people who have much and wonder why we can't be like that too. We want what they have but we don't want to have to endure what they had to, to get it. We need to be looking at the many blessings God has richly blessed us with and ask ourselves, "How can we turn our surplus into ways of helping others." Perhaps you have a lot of extra clothes that you know could benefit a church clothing closet to help someone out who can't afford to buy new clothes; Can you donate a few of those jackets you have that you don't wear because someone else could use it instead to stay warm but can't afford a coat? What about during that next food drive instead of digging for a few cans of food you don't want any more, you seriously go and pick out an entire meal of things you know you'd want if you couldn't afford food instead?
The Bible promises that to those who give generously from their heart, much will be given back. You just need to check your motives first. If you're giving in hopes of getting something back in return, you might be surprised to find yourself not getting anything. Only God can judge the heart. Maybe you need to change your whys instead and look at what it will benefit someone else instead.
I've been a book reviewer since 2009 and was convicted with this very message. God put it on my heart to share with you in hopes you will be stirred to move in the same way I am. I've literally ran out of places in my four book shelves for more books and they keep coming every day. I thought, why am I keeping all these books?
Originally I thought I would keep them in a way to enjoy them later when I retired and wanted some exceptional books to read during my "down time." Then I thought of all the people who might not be able to afford the very blessing God has opened in my life, the love for reading, the love for a life changing message found within the words of a great book and they simply lacked the resources to buy them. At first, I discussed the option of donating them to our local library because they truly could use it. And think of how exciting it would be if there were more Christian titles available than non Christian titles in the library? Wouldn't that change lives in our small town?
The answer is Yes! My husband was a bit bummed because he knows how much I place a value in a great novel. But God wasn't done yet. I said I would pray about it and see what God wanted me to do first. I even commented to my husband that if I died tomorrow, what would he do with my vast library I have accumulated? He said he would keep a few of my favorites, ask family and friends if they wanted any, and donate the rest.
He said, "Aren't you keeping those to read when you retire?"
I said, "Do you think God won't keep adding to my library?"
Friends, God answered my prayer in a powerful manner today.
He provided me and you with another solution!!!
I have a blogger friend Tiffany Stuart. Tea with Tiffany, who is embarking on a missions trip to Uganda Africa as a missionary for Beauty for Ashes Missions Program. The trip will cost $3500 for all her expenses and she is doing a remarkable thing because she can go now that her kids are grown. God has placed this on her heart to go forward in this endeavor and needs our support. So I am going to be listing well over 400 books that are in excellent condition to help. I am asking for your donations on any of the titles I will be sharing this week to help her get to Africa. She has less than 90 days to raise the money, and the funny thing is it will only take 35 people who can pledge a $100 to get her there. I know times are hard, but what if you could donate your money and buy a novel? That's where the beauty of God's plan comes together.
I am taking donations for any of the titles I will be listing. 95% of the books are Christian titles from Western, Amish, Romance, Historical, Speculative fiction and even some that are entire series. There are paperback and hardcovers. I am not asking for any specific amount other than what God places on your heart for what you want to donate along with shipping costs. I will attempt to ship them to you as affordably as I can and if you're local and want to pick them up, GREAT! If you just want to donate money to help Tiffany get there without buying anything, God Bless You.
I am still working out the logistics with her, but we hope to have this working by Friday, April 9th at the latest so please keep us in your prayers. If you want to donate now, please click on the link below:
If you're an author and want to help, please message me and we can work together to create something amazing to help Tiffany get to Africa. I believe God's going to work to complete this funding within the next 30 days once this goes live. Will you join me in praying that God will move hearts to make this happen?
For more information on Tiffany's Mission trip, please visit her page and support her in any way you can.