[photo courtesy]

I read the following excerpt from my dear friend Melissa. It is the immensely challenging story of a couple who supports her financially in her efforts to minister to the lost as well as disciple young students on college campuses. Listen as she tells the wonderous news,

God is so generous….I have been meditating on how much God has given us in Christ. whew…

I would like to tell a story of people who, because of God’s generosity, were also able to be generous.

As most of you know I have the opportunity to invite other people into this ministry here in Ohio and this vision of discipleship. I want to share this vision and get people involved and one way to get people involved is through financial support. I get to trust God as He lays on people’s hearts to give, therefore I am fully funded by others. It has been a challenging and rewarding endeavor to say the least. Often it is so easy for me to focus on the money instead of the hearts and souls of those I am in contact with. This story of my friends helped me to remember that I am a fisher of men not of dollars and that the blessing goes to the giver because it is a joy to give.

In North Carolina I had the opportunity to get to know a young couple that went to school where I did. Blake and Amber are their names. They are both 20 and 21 years old, newly married, and both students in college. I spent one summer with them both at a youth camp and was able to see how much the loved the Lord, the truth of His word, and people. Blake was always encouraging me to remember the Gospel and be willing to share it at all times. He is a great guy. Amber is equally as passionate and intentional with those opportunities. Over a month ago I sat down and had lunch with Amber. We were talking about discipleship and it’s importance and she was encouraging me to be bold in getting to know people and I was encouraging her. She told me a of a friend who recently became a believer whom she was entering a discipling relationship with. I was so excited to hear her passion. It made me that much more excited about what I was going to do.
Right before I was about to leave Amber began to tell me a story. She said that she and Blake really wanted to give and support me but they simply were unable to do so. Blake had been looking for a job for a while and recently found an only semi-stable job in special needs work. While Amber was almost about to give birth to their first son and would soon be out of work. They had trouble making ends meet as it was. I completely understood their situation and wasn’t dissappointed at all. But…Amber wasn’t done with her story. She then continued to tell me that a week ago she was in a small car accident. No one was hurt and her car was only slightly damaged but still drove fine. So they filed insurance and got a check in the mail for repairs on thier vehicle. And Blake and Amber had decided not to fix their car and instead pledge to support me each month.

I was so surprised. Amber was just giddy. She said that it was an answer to prayer that they had been given extra money. And they knew that it was God giving to them so that they could give to me. And she was so happy to be able to give.

The cool thing is these aren’t the only people who had this experience. I could tell you many other stories of families and individuals who gave out of their need or their abundance. And I also don’t know many of the stories of how people have come to give to this ministry. These people weren’t giving simply because they knew or loved me. They were giving because they loved what God was doing in people’s hearts and wanted to be a part of it. They wanted to experience the blessing of generosity.

“for it is more blessed to give than recieve.”

Praise the Lord!

Wow, what a testimony!

How have you been encouraged to give sacrificially?

Thanks for reading!