Jesus made himself a man of poverty twice. Once when he left his Kingdom in Heaven, and again when he began his ministry (His ministry was funded by righteous women! Right on!).
Something stirring within me for awhile has been that word and deed are the two main components we need to show off the goodness of God. Jesus had nothing material to promote God’s blessings (he even rode a donkey into Jerusalem instead of the steed of a king!). The only thing Jesus did that drew people to the Good News was what Paul later called the “demonstration of the Spirit and of power” AKA what the Father was saying and doing.
We do not need to wait for our “big dreams” to come true before our lives impact people towards one end of eternity or the other. There is nothing stopping you from showing off the FRUIT of a GOOD TREE; the gifts of the Spirit (which require words) and the fruit of the Spirit (which require action).
I don’t need a bunch of material things to point people to Jesus (Jesus himself showed us that) – I have everything I need already just as a daughter. God so enjoys lavishing his love on us – his love is both relentless and extravagant – yet, all the “added things” are just that, added. Added to what? The simplicity of the Gospel is that we are loved, Jesus saved us from the curse of the law, in Him we have freedom, through the Spirit we can show off this extravagant love, and we have this Jesus-capability to do and say what the Father is doing and saying.
Don’t wait for the “finish line” when your entire race is meant to point people to Jesus. Have you been hiding in the shadows, afraid to boast about the goodness of your God when your car is rusted out? Have you danced around talking about God to your family because they know about the marital problems you’ve had? Are you timid about laying hands on the sick when you’re in the midst of a chronic disease?
You may not be living where God is ultimately taking you, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t a light. If there is a basket over your head it’s because you put it there, not Jesus. Take the basket off and liberate yourself. Be free to show off who God is with what you have right now. You will find as you look at what all God has done that you have something to give – and people need what you have.
My final thought: I always associate being generous with money. And yet, I realize that the scripture says “be enriched in every way” so I need to share all of what I have! If you are called to be “generous on every occasion” that means be generous with love, be generous with prophecy/healing/words of knowledge (etc..), be generous with comfort, be generous with friendliness, be generous with unity, as well as being generous with your money!
Though I know God’s best for me is not sitting in a pig pen eating the scraps of the world, you could still strip me of all my worldly possessions and I’m confident that my life would impact eternity through this simple message: God sent His son to take our death penalty upon himself and endowed us with his Spirit to pull people from darkness into light…just like Jesus.
Scripture references below!
Luke 8:1-3 + Colossians 3:17 + 1 Corinthians 2:4 + 2 Corinthians 9:11