Leadership Lesson I: Faith to be Generous
The generous soul will be made rich, And he who waters will also be watered himself. -Proverbs 11:25
Joshua had true faith to take down giants. Faith only comes about as we have total trust in God. At 10 years old I anointed a pig, and God healed its hernia! Funny I know, but I learned that God cared about everything. After that time, I just believed God cared about details. I do not think that God is my puppet, but I do believe he wants all of us to trust him so He can be glorified.
Faith is connected to generosity, and God uses generous people. Now you may not understand this principle, but generosity is connected to faith in God. I sense God is saying that we need to trust Him more, which means we need to be more generous personally. Do you really want to learn the principle of faith? Become generous.
Two of our close friends were missionaries and worked for almost nothing. They were coming to our house, and before they arrived God spoke to me to ask them what they needed. Debbie and I had saved up $4000 for a new mattress for my bad back that occurred from a car accident. When they arrived, I asked the gentleman, “What do you need right now?” He hesitated, but I insisted. He told me their car had blown up and they needed around $3500-4000 to get one for their travels. Immediately without hesitation, I wrote them a check for their car. I trusted God. I still don't have a mattress, but God's work went forward and I am making it fine. I cannot tell you the many times the last years God told me to mess up my budget and trust him. Every time—without exception—he has provided for us. I do not for once believe in a “name it, claim it” philosophy, but I do believe God is saying there is a principle of trust you need in your life.
What does this mean for leaders? We have some leaders and laity who are too budget-driven. Many pastors and their people think, “I live on little, so I give little.” I dare you to look this week to trust God. As he opens your heart in this area, it will open your vision to needs. I have seen Pastors and people make $227 dollars per week, pay $22.70 in tithe, and die meagerly and tight-minded. I will not live that way. God loves a cheerful giver. Effective leadership is a about a generous heart all because you understand the gift of grace!
If we do not have faith we will not dream! How big is your God? I’m preparing you to dream.
~OCU President, Dr. Mark Smith