Last night I spoke with the youth group and then the mission committee of a church in town. I have several friends there, and worshiped in the morning with them. The pastor’s text was Genesis 11:31 – 12:5.
I’m not sure what the people behind us thought, because I kept shaking my head as it was read. Not because I disagreed, but in amazement. You see, Genesis 12:1-3 was one of the passages I had already planned to use for my talks that night!
The pastor talked about how God sent Abram out "to the land that I will show you". Not a destination on a map, but just where God would lead. Abram, in faith, headed out, away from all he knew, from all his family and land, and went. In that passage God also tells Abram that He will bless him, and all nations will be blessed through him.
I am part of a blessed people. And, I don’t just mean in material ways. Even those of us without a ton of things are still among the richest people in the world. But, that’s not what I’m talking about.
We who live in countries where speaking the name of Jesus is allowed, who have access to the Bible in our own language, who have churches to attend, libraries and bookstores filled with Christian books, we are blessed. We have a faith heritage which goes back hundreds of years. We have a history of reaching out, of sharing the Good News.
Clearly, there have been abuses, where we’ve used our knowledge to harm, not help. We’ve been disobedient, hoarding our spiritual gifts. We’ve allowed books and music which don’t point people to Jesus to be labeled ‘Christian’. We’ve turned inward, more concerned with our own comfort than with bringing the gospel to those who are perishing.
But, that doesn’t change the fact that we are blessed. And, according to Genesis – according to the whole Bible, actually! – our blessings are given to us for a reason. The reason is not to be super-blessed all by ourselves. Instead, we are Blessed To Be A Blessing.
When I first started attending church again in 2003, I joined the choir. I remember telling the woman sitting next to me how I was going to spend Christmas alone. My work schedule wouldn’t allow me to visit family out-of-state, so I was sticking around. It was going to be fine. She said, “Wouldn’t you rather come have dinner with my family?”
This person I didn’t know all that well was inviting me to share in her family’s day. She had the blessing of a faith-filled family who loved each other and loved Jesus, and she invited me to be a part of it! The really cool thing is, that family was there last night. In fact, they are the ones who invited me to their church to share! Blessed To Be A Blessing.
When I think of all the ways God has blessed me, from the huge things to the simple ones, I am in awe. But, just standing around amazed at His goodness is not my destination. It’s just the starting point. The more blessed I am, the more I am to bless others.
And, the really crazy thing I’ve discovered is, there is something to the ‘prosperity gospel’ after all! Huh?! Yep, it’s true.
The more I give away my blessings – and again, I’m not talking so much about stuff here but about sharing the faith God alone has given me! – the more I find I have. As I’ve stepped out in faith to head to the place God is leading me, I have found myself more and more blessed. The more times I share how Jesus is redeeming my icky stuff to shine out His glory, the more opportunities He is opening for even more sharing.
I can’t wait to see how God continues to bless me as I go from here. Because in those blessings, I get to know more of Him, I get to share more of Him. I can’t wait to see how He’s going to allow me to bless others in His name. Blessed To Be A Blessing – B2BAB. What a great and generous God we serve!!