If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. 1 Corinthians 13:3
Throughout the world many wealthy people can be seen giving large amounts of money for different causes. Many of those people doing the giving have never even set foot in the area to help with the cause directly themselves.
Others have gone out of their way to physically help with a cause, while giving some money. Often these things are done for tax write-offs or for publicity.
As Paul begins to describe what true love is, he states that if he gives everything he has to the poor or goes through hardship for others, but does not have love, he does not gain anything.
Wealthy people are not the only ones who often give without love in the process. Giving in order to get something is a common problem for many people, whether wealthy or poor.
Getting some type of tax exemption is a common reason for people to give money or things. Getting praise and recognition is the common reason for giving of one’s self to help another person out. Both of these types of giving gain nothing, since love is not really in it. The only love is selfish personal love, not God’s love.
Giving like this is also very common in a church. Some will give as little as possible, just to say that they gave. Or they give a lot and announce it loudly, so that everyone knows that they gave. Again these people gain nothing.
God gave out of love when He gave Jesus. Jesus gave out of love when He gave His life. Every believer needs to give out of true love, love for God and love for others.
You may or may not be a person who gives money or self to others. If you do give, examine why you give. Ask yourself what is the motivation behind your giving of money or self.
Allow God’s love to permeate your heart, so that all that you do will be done out of love, not for selfish pride or dead obedience. If God’s love is not in the giving, it will mean nothing and gains nothing.
When love is at the center of your giving, God will be able to reward you greatly, both in this life and in eternity.
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will know God’s love for you and others; that you will have God’s love in your heart for others; that you will give out of love for God and others; and that God will help you to remove all selfish pride.