Our scripture this morning is Matthew 6:2-4.

So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Jesus teaches us about giving and what we expect in return, perhaps not repayment but at least recognition. He tells us this is a human failing, that we should “not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” Being applauded or even thanked is not part of the equation, only sharing what God has given us is important.

God gave us all of creation and told us to manage it for Him. This includes caring for those who for whatever reason don’t have enough. Giving has been part of His plan for us all along. Proverbs 11:25 tells us ”A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.“ 

Because we have free will, God guides us but doesn’t force us in how we use our gifts. We must give in the same way. Our giving is between us and God, and what the receiver does with that gift is between them and God. God gave us everything in love and we are expected to give to others out of our love for Him.

Gracious God, You created us in Your own image that we might love each other as You first loved us. Bless us to be generous givers, seeking only good for those in need and not the acclaim of the world. Amen.

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