John 13:12 What He Has Done For You

When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. John 13:12

Understanding what other people are doing is something that does not commonly occur. Among people, misunderstanding happens more often than understanding.

All a person can see is the outward action, but are unable to see the true motive for the action. The actions are often misconstrued for the wrong reasons. Many will even take offense to actions done with the right heart or purpose.

While sitting and eating His last meal with the disciples, Jesus began to wash their feet. As He finished washing their feet, He asked them if they understood what He did for them.

During the biblical times people wore sandals and walked everywhere. Their feet would get extremely dirty. When they went into someone’s place, they would often be given some water to wash their feet. Each person would wash his own feet.

Instead of allowing the disciples to wash their own feet, Jesus washed their feet Himself. Not only had Jesus washed their feet, He also later paid for their sins, forgave them of their sins, did many healings, and gave each one life.

All these things were done for them and as an example to them. Believers are to put others before themselves. They are to humble themselves and serve others as they serve God, just as Jesus continues to serve.

This serving can come in washing feet, forgiving, giving a helping hand, teaching and many other ways. It is about loving the neighbor and the enemy as God loves them.

It will be a struggle for any believer to do any of these things, until he comes to a good understanding of what Jesus has done for him.

In the same way Jesus washed the feet of the disciples, He also has washed you clean of your sins. This was done in humility when He was dying upon the cross, cursed of His Father in heaven.

You are expected to be just like Jesus, humbling yourself to serve others as you serve God. Doing things for others is the same as doing it for God, but it takes putting others before yourself.

It takes understanding what He has done for you to do it for others.

Do you understand what He has done for you?

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will understand what Jesus as done for you; that you will humble yourself to serve others as Jesus has served you; that you will know God’s love for you; and that you will have God’s love for others.

2 Corinthians 9:12 Double Purpose To Give

This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. 2 Corinthians 9:12

There are many organizations that urge people to give generously in order to help other people out. In America, they have made a dual purpose to give. One is to help others out, while the other is to get a tax write-off at the end of the year on the income taxes.

The world recognizes the need to help others out and attempt to make good on selfish reasons to do so.

Paul just commended the church for their selfless giving to help others out. He recognizes that this not only supplies the needs of other believers, but is also an expression of thanks to God.

While many recognize the need to give in order to help others, they do not always see it as a means of expressing thanks to God also. God has given people money and things for two purposes. One is to provide for their own needs, and the other is to provide for the needs of others.

At the time God sent Jesus to die on the cross, He had dual purpose in giving His Son. One is to provide forgiveness for those who believe in Him, the other is to provide a way to have fellowship with fallen man.

As a believer generously gives from his heart to the needs of others, he is telling God thanks for what He has blessed him with. He is not being selfish and hoarding what God has blessed him with to himself, but is sharing it from a loving and generous heart.

When this generous giving is done, people will praise God for His provision and the obedience of the other believers.

Regardless of how much or how little you have, you have been blessed with God with what you have. God is your provider of all that you have and need. Instead of hoarding and keeping it to yourself, give to others who are in need.

Your giving will be a blessing from God to others and an expression of thanks and trust to God for what He has given you. In all of your giving, you will never be able to out give what God can and has given you.

How are you thanking God today for what He has given you?

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will see what God has blessed you with; that God will show you ways to share what He has given you; that you will show thanks to God by giving to others in need; and that many will see and praise God because of your generous giving.

2 Corinthians 8:2 Extreme Generosity

In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. 2 Corinthians 8:2

Giving is something that many in the world even understand to a point. Many wealthy people give a lot a way every year, though it is primarily for the purpose of getting a tax cut. Others will also give, but only to look good, not really to help others out.

The majority of people in the world are trying to keep things to themselves. They want all the wealth and not to have to share it with others.

Paul points out that the Macedonian church had been going through a severe trial and extreme poverty, yet, they gave very generously to the needs of others.

Believers are to be known for sharing and generosity, yet, this is not often the case. Just as with the world, many believers are holding on to what they have, afraid that they will not make it if they give anything away.

As they hold this view, they are only looking at the here and now and not at what God can provide. The work that Jesus had done for them is forgotten. Jesus had given up all of heaven to live as a man and die on a cross. He gave everything, so that the believer can have everything.

Keeping this in mind, every believer needs to be filled with love and joy at being able to give something to any in need. The amount given does not matter, but the love and joy in the heart to be helping others out does.

No matter how little a person has, there is usually something that he can give to another in need. This is a portrayal of what Jesus has already given and can be a tool to share His love and be His witness.

When you see someone in need, what is your first reaction? Do you want to send them to someone else? Or do you provide what you can with a generous heart?

Pass on what God has given you. The material things you have are only temporary and need to be used to build His kingdom. Be willing to part with material things in order to show His love and meet the needs of others. God will, in turn, meet all of your needs generously.

You can never out give what God can provide.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will know what God has given you; that you will know God’s love for others; that you will see God’s provision for your life; and you will find God’s joy in giving to meet the needs of others.

Faith For Provision: Widow At Zarephath

Widowed woman

She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah. 1 Kings 17:15-16 

During a severe famine in the land, God had told Elijah to go to a certain widow in Zarephath for his provision of food. There he asked the lady for some food. The woman said that she had only a little food left for one meal, then she and her son would die from starvation.

Think about this for a moment. Here is a lady and her son about to eat their last meal and die and this guy comes up to her and wants her to make him some food first. This sounds selfish and rude. Most people would tell him to get lost or sorry that they cannot give him any food.

Pancakes

Giving up the last of something you have to a complete stranger would be difficult to do, especially if it meant life or death for you or someone else you love. In order to do something like this, it would take a great step of faith. You would have to first know that you are doing what God wants, then you would have to trust that God would meet your needs.

Elijah told her to trust that God would provide and still to make the food for him. The widow chose to trust Elijah and God and decided to make the food for Elijah. As she made the food, somehow God continued to provide the needed oil and flour to keep making more food.

Man stepping of cliff

Stepping out into faith will sometimes require to give up something that you need. In doing this, you are trusting God to meet that need in some other way.

Often people trust their own abilities to meet their personal needs. They trust their job, bank account, experience, and more, rather than have faith in God. Choosing to do your own thing will not show faith in God, but faith in self. In the process of trusting self, you will not be able to see the provision of God in your life.

A life of faith will not be focused on self. It will be focused on what you can do for others knowing that God will meet your needs. When Jesus came to this earth, He came focused on serving life to every person. He trusted His Father to take care of Him and meet His needs. This included laying down His life. He had faith, that if He laid down His life for others, God would raise it back up again. And He did.

Empty tomb

If the widow had not trusted Elijah and God, then that meal most likely would have been her last meal. God would not have provided for her, because she would not have trusted in Him, but in her own abilities. Yet, her actions of trust allowed God to provide abundantly for her needs.

As you see a need in someone else’s life, you may have the ability to meet it, but in the process may create a need of your own. In seeing this, you may not see how you can help the other person out, without jeopardizing your own life. This is where faith steps in. Trust God to meet your needs.

In the same way you may be meeting the need of someone else, God may have another person waiting to meet your need. Or God may doing some miracle to provide for your need as you step out in faith.

Helping hands

Do not hold back helping someone else out when you have the ability. This is a way to shine God’s love and provision into the life of another person. It is also a great act of faith on your part. Trusting God to touch the other person through you. Trusting God to meet your needs. Trusting God to help you provide for others.

Think about ways you can step up to help meet the needs of someone else. How can God use you to touch someone else’s life? If God could provide for he widow…If God provided for you in the past…then God can provide for you again in your time of need. Trust Him. Have faith in His abilities.