“But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.”
1 Chronicles 29:14
In my blog last week, I focused on the fact that everything belongs to God, nothing you own is truly yours but a blessing from God. So here’s a challenge: what are you giving back to him?
Being a student is financially challenging, but is also an amazing time to learn how to give. As a student every penny is precious and because of that we also know the importance of budgeting. How often are you willing to sacrifice one thing in order to do another? For example, do you spend less on a weekly shop in order to go on a night out? And therefore, how much more are you willing to sacrifice to the God who has given you everything?
As students we justify our lack of money as a reason not to give, when in actual fact we just don’t want to give. The first step towards changing our attitude to money is to recognise this; once we have acknowledged this, we can ask God to change our hearts.
“Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few pence.
Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, ‘Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything – all she had to live on.’"
In the passage above, Jesus makes it quite clear, he’s not concern about the amount that we give, but the hearts that give it. The widow trusted that God was ‘El Shaddai’ The All Sufficient One. She trusted that if she gave God everything she had, he would provide for her, so she gave everything. This trust probably came from years of giving and being provided for; it probably didn’t spring up overnight, and yet we often put giving off until we have developed that trust. This trust will only develop if we put our faith in God into action.
So here's is my advice: start small, but start somewhere. Work out what you can give and what you’re willing to sacrifice, it might mean bringing a pack-up and a thermos flask to campus rather than buying lunch, or fewer take-aways and nights out, giving up your spotify subscription and listening to the music you already own. But start somewhere and most importantly ask God to change your heart towards giving.
If you feel called to give to the church monthly, please either get in contact with the finance team at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you are struggling financially do get in contact with us.
Jess Vaughan is a Student Forgee. She graduated from the University of York last summer