Give It Away
I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, . . . whom you sent to take care of my needs. Philippians 2:25
Many charities that help people with various needs depend on donations of unwanted clothing and household items from those who have more than enough. And it’s good to give away unused things so they can benefit others. But we are often more reluctant to part with things of value that we use every day.
When Paul was imprisoned in Rome, he needed continuing encouragement and the companionship of trusted friends. Yet he sent two of his closest comrades to help the followers of Jesus in Philippi (Phil. 2:19-30). “I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon . . . . I have no one else like him, who will show genuine concern for your welfare” (vv. 19-20). And, “I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs” (v. 25). Paul freely gave to others what he most needed himself.
When we #serve the Lord, He is honored, others are helped, and we are blessed.
Whatever we feel is “most valued” in our lives today could be of great benefit to someone we know. It may be our time, friendship, encouragement, a listening ear, or a helping hand. When we give away what the Lord has given to us, He is honored, others are helped, and we are blessed.
Lord, show me what I cling to. If someone needs it, open my heart and my hands and help me give it away today.
Giving freely honors the Lord, helps others, and blesses us.
By David McCasland
The “Go” of Unconditional Identification
Jesus…said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor…and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.” —Mark 10:21
The rich young ruler had the controlling passion to be perfect. When he saw Jesus Christ, he wanted to be like Him. Our Lord never places anyone’s personal holiness above everything else when He calls a disciple. Jesus’ primary consideration is my absolute annihilation of my right to myself and my identification with Him, which means having a relationship with Him in which there are no other relationships. Luke 14:26 has nothing to do with salvation or sanctification, but deals solely with unconditional identification with Jesus Christ. Very few of us truly know what is meant by the absolute “go” of unconditional identification with, and abandonment and surrender to, Jesus.
“Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him…” (Mark 10:21). This look of Jesus will require breaking your heart away forever from allegiance to any other person or thing. Has Jesus ever looked in this way at you? This look of Jesus transforms, penetrates, and captivates. Where you are soft and pliable with God is where the Lord has looked at you. If you are hard and vindictive, insistent on having your own way, and always certain that the other person is more likely to be in the wrong than you are, then there are whole areas of your nature that have never been transformed by His gaze.
“One thing you lack….” From Jesus Christ’s perspective, oneness with Him, with nothing between, is the only good thing.
“…sell whatever you have….” I must humble myself until I am merely a living person. I must essentially renounce possessions of all kinds, not for salvation (for only one thing saves a person and that is absolute reliance in faith upon Jesus Christ), but to follow Jesus. “…come…and follow Me.” And the road is the way He went.
The great thing about faith in God is that it keeps a man undisturbed in the midst of disturbance. Notes on Isaiah, 1376 R