Posted: November 21, 2016 by Nate Ferguson, Lead Pastor
I didn’t realize this could be so much fun……
My wife, Rachelle, was pregnant with our first son, Kaden. Her doctor was a friend who attended the church we served at in Morris. We had saved up for the cost of all the doctor visits and delivery. We planned and we had a payment plan in place. When the time came, the first payment was made. Then, when it was time for us to make the second payment, our doctor said he wouldn’t accept any more money. It was over $1500!
I am a very proud person and argued with him that we needed to pay what we owed. He refused and encouraged me to accept the gift as a blessing. I decided I would “show him” and I would give those funds to our local church and other charitable needs in the community.
At this time in my life, I wasn’t generous at all. I felt like I needed to obey God’s word and give a tithe, but not one penny more. On the other hand, my wife, Rachelle, was crazy generous and wanted to give to everything. So we embarked on a 4-month journey of generosity above and beyond.
I kept meticulous notes as to where we had given the money and who it had affected so I could share with our doctor and really “show him” that we weren’t just going to receive a gift and do nothing in return.
I learned two valuable lessons during this time of my life (age 27)….
1. When someone wants to bless you, accept the gift and be thankful. In my pride, I had a terrible attitude that I later realized was completely wrong.
2. Generosity is FUN!!!! My heart changed through this experience. What started as an “I’ll show you” moment turned into a “there is so much need in our church, community, and world, and it’s so much fun to be able to do something about it” moment!
This moment changed our family. For the first time, my heart was in the right place and we were in agreement as a married couple as to why and how much to give. Sixteen plus years later, it’s still crazy fun to give to our local church (The Village) and other important causes in our community, region, and world.
My prayer is that somehow, someway, God will work in your life the way he did in mine. Moving from an attitude of, “do I have to do this?”….to “I can’t wait to be a part of being a blessing to others!”
7 Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. (2 Corinthians 9:7-8).