The Fire in the Mirror: Giving as an Image

I like to give gifts to people. I like to make people feel special and known. I like to personalize each gift, putting my stamp or spin on it. I like to think people enjoy the gifts I make and buy just for them.

In this third and final installment of our bible study series about debt management, see the first and second posts here, the not-pastor but experienced debtor Dave Ramsey talked about giving.

Like, as in, you giving your money away.

First of all, Ramsey says that money doesn’t belong to you, so you should follow God’s advice and lead on where or to whom you should give that money. Second of all, we’re made in the image of God, and God is a giver.

Father’s give their daughters away in marriage. God sacrificed his only son, Jesus, so we can have a relationship with God himself. A very personal one.

If you believe that we are messed up, broken people, and that God can’t be near imperfection because he is entirely perfect, and if you believe that Jesus Christ is God in human form,

(I know that’s a lot of ifs. I only believed in God a few years ago, so I know that believing in God is kind of a big question.)

then that means God killed himself to be nearer to you.

He gave himself, he gave his son. He gave his own flesh and blood so that you can know him.

God knows the pain of giving something away, but he also knows the joy, the reward, too.

And if we are made in God’s image, in his character and as a reflection of him in the world, then that means we give. We give and we give and we give, but we never run out of the fuel to the fire.

That’s what makes Christians, Christians who rely on grace and Christ alone, kind of really special: We don’t conform to the culture. We don’t believe that keeping things for ourselves is a way to live. Our joy is not in quantity. Our happiness is not in the dollar. We are managers of what God owns. Not to say that Christians often don’t fall into this false belief; this idea of giving goes against the very way our culture is structured.

In the end, money does not sustain us. God sustains us in an unsustainable world.

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