We're meant to love our neighbor all the time.
Jesus said, "Love one another" eight times.
Who's our neighbor?
"The man replied, “The Scriptures say, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind.’ They also say, ‘Love your neighbors as much as you love yourself.’” Luke 10:27
"My dear friends, we must love each other. Love comes from God, and when we love each other, it shows that we have been given new life. We are now God’s children, and we know him." 1 John 4:7
This is what we're supposed to be doing -- God's love pouring out through us.
"No one who loves others will harm them. So love is all that the Law demands." Romans 13:10
If we do it out of a heart full of love, no harm will be done. Do the best you can. If your love is rejected, that's okay.
Money can be a challenge. Money should bring us joy when we give it. Jesus had 29 parables. Sixteen of those parables talked about money.
"But if we say we love God and don’t love each other, we are liars. We cannot see God. So how can we love God, if we don’t love the people we can see?' 1 John 4:20
If you can't love your neighbor you aren't loving God. If our love comes from God you have an endless supply of love.
"But love your enemies and be good to them. Lend without expecting to be paid back.[a] Then you will get a great reward, and you will be the true children of God in heaven. He is good even to people who are unthankful and cruel." Luke 6:35
No strings attached. No qualification needed to be loved by us. Love the best you can love. Give because God wants you to.
"I am the Lord All-Powerful, and I challenge you to put me to the test. Bring the entire ten percent into the storehouse, so there will be food in my house. Then I will open the windows of heaven and flood you with blessing after blessing." Malachi 3:10
God tells us to test us in the area of money and giving. Do it! Take the challenge. If we love we can't love too much. We can't give too much either.
"I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving." Philippians 4:17
We always get more than we gave. God reached out through someone else to show us love.
The world says keep it, hoard it, save it. If we aren't careful we'll fall into the world's mentality about money.
Where you spend your time and money is what's important to you.
It seems wise (the world's way) but it isn't.
"You cannot be the slave of two masters! You will like one more than the other or be more loyal to one than the other. You cannot serve both God and money." Matthew 6:24
"Don’t worry and ask yourselves, “Will we have anything to eat? Will we have anything to drink? Will we have any clothes to wear?” 32 Only people who don’t know God are always worrying about such things. Your Father in heaven knows that you need all of these. 33 But more than anything else, put God’s work first and do what he wants. Then the other things will be yours as well." Matthew 6:31-33
Practical love -- perfect example is The Good Samaritan.
He did all the practical stuff needed to be done. If you see a need fill it. God knows you're ready for it. We can never out give or out love God.
If you're doing God's business, He'll take care of you. You'll be okay.
"Every good and perfect gift comes down from the Father who created all the lights in the heavens. He is always the same and never makes dark shadows by changing." James 1:17
Everything we have is God's. Every single thing. I'm God's steward. I'm holding onto God's stuff. Bills I pay feed other families -- think about the connections.
"If you give to others, you will be given a full amount in return. It will be packed down, shaken together, and spilling over into your lap. The way you treat others is the way you will be treated." Luke 6:38
"Each of you has been blessed with one of God’s many wonderful gifts to be used in the service of others. So use your gift well."1 Peter 4:10
God gives so we can give.
Cheerfully give as we have joyously received.
"Each of you must make up your own mind about how much to give. But don’t feel sorry that you must give and don’t feel that you are forced to give. God loves people who love to give." 2 Corinthians 9:7
He wants us to give like He gives. Don't be reluctant.
Are you fulfilling a need? Open your eyes to other people's worlds and their needs. We each give in our own way. God is offering us a blessing.