Have you ever felt resentful or a sense of reluctant obligation when they pass the offering plate? Yeah, me too. But that’s because us knuckle-headed humans don’t understand how an offering works. First read this:
And He [Jesus] looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury. And He saw a poor widow putting in two small copper coins. And He said, “Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all of them; for they all out of their surplus put into the offering; but she out of her poverty put in all that she had to live on.” (Luke 21:1-4)
How could her meager offering be worth “more?” Apparently, the value of an offering is not measured in dollars and cents. Makes sense (no pun intended) when you remember that God doesn’t need money. Offerings are not about raising money for God. So what is the reason for an offering? The widow’s offering was “more” because her trust was greater. With her copper coins, she was saying, “Father, this is all I have but I love you and trust You to provide.”
Offerings were set up by God as a tangible way to experience a relationship with Him based on thankfulness and trust. That is why the offerings were to come from the first part of each harvest. Thankfulness and trust. See that?
A friend of mine is an expert builder of houses. One day, as I was trying, unsuccessfully, to tear out a soffit to remodel my kitchen, he happened to stop by. He watched in silent amusement as I continued to get my butt kicked. Then he asked, “Would you give me your hammer and let me work with you?” I knew he was good and I was ready for help. I gave him (offered him) the hammer and watched in amazement as, with a few expert strokes, he made real progress.
Offerings are like that. God holds out His hand, not as a beggar or a bill collector, but with a smile on His face, asking, “Hey, you want to work together with me? Got a hammer I could use?”
Offerings are opportunities to strengthen our relationship with our loving Father, the relationship based on thankfulness and trust. And it is a real thrill to join Him in what He is doing, working hand in hand.