The World Race
We know giving is important – in fact the scripture I wrestle with in writing this post is from Matthew, chapter 6. Do I talk about how and where we’re giving? If I do, what’s my motive and am I forfeiting an eternal reward at the price of a temporal one? Or, is it appropriate to tell a story of what God has prompted us to do in hopes that it serves an encouragement to others and glorifies God because He moved us to do it rather than we?
One thing is plain about the scripture – Jesus doesn’t say “if you give”. He says “When you give…” Giving was such a part of the walk with God that He threw it right in the mix alongside “when you fast” and “when you pray“. But, do we tithe on our net or our gross? Do we tithe on child support or maintenance payments? Do we tithe on our tax return – I mean, if we get a tax return it’s based on money we’ve already received and (hopefully) already tithed against, so shouldn’t we just receive it graciously?
For a time, I wrestled with that spirit of entitlement – I earned it, it’s mine. But, over time, I have clearly seen that the truth is here: none of it belongs to us and we deserve nothing. If you can turn down the volume knob on the self condemnation channel and pump up the encouragement track, repeat that last statement. “We deserve nothing but God’s judgment.” I don’t know about you, but as that statement has settled in to a healthy place in my heart, I’ve felt less entitled to just about everything. Including that tax return.
Yes, we have debt. Yes, we’re going to use a chunk of it to pay off debt, but we sincerly feel we’d be disobedient if we didn’t do something “more direct” for the Kingdom of Christ with this year’s return. So, maybe selfishly (hopefully not), we’re helping to support a few ministries near and dear to us. One of them is Taryn Neurohr, who upon graduating from college this Spring will embark on an 11 month mission trip that will take her to 11 countries. It’s called “The World Race”.
If you’ve never heard of it, check out the video link at the top of this post – you will be astounded by what God does with people like Taryn, who love Him radically and share the gospel with vigor, candor, and tenacity in places most of us would never dare go.
While I spend a lot of time raising support for the local mission we’re on in heavily churched, yet performance based Atlanta, I’d like to appeal to you as Taryn prepares for her trip to join her in support. Not only in prayer, but in material aid. Have a yard sale. Join her at $10 a month. Or, take a big chunk of your pending IRS return and send it her way. Would you pray for her and support what God has called her to do for His kingdom?