But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. As it is written: “He has dispersed abroad, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever.” Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God. (2 Corinthians 9:6-11)
God Still Provides In 2020
The year 2020 will be remembered as one of the most challenging years since the Great Depression. With the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) raging around the world and 1.5 million deaths worldwide, the economic, political, and scientific repercussions have yet to be fully realized. The next few years will tell the measure of how great the impact of COVID-19 will be upon the world. Economies around the globe have been hard hit. Families have torn apart with the loss of industries, jobs, closures, and financial ruin. In the United States, seemingly secure business is struggling to find ways to continue amidst the social distancing and masking regulations imposed by various institutions. In many places, churches are not meeting as a result of legal impositions or decisions by leaders of the congregation to mitigate the spread of the virus. The disruption of the assembly has been a heavy burden on the church. What was taken for granted before is now a challenge to find ways to fulfill the will of the Father.
As the year draws to a close there is one truth that has remained constant. In the face of the viral turmoil of COVID-19, God has remained constant. Many parts of society have been altered permanently but the word of God remains as true as it has been from the beginning. God’s grace and providence continue to fill the world. The people of God have suffered much loss in the year 2020 but for the spiritually acute souls, it has been a year of deep reflection. God has not abandoned His people. He remains constant in the face of turmoil. Like the persecuted saints of the first century, God’s message to the beleaguered hearts of the downtrodden is that He still rules and reigns in the affairs of men. His purpose remains the same. The work of the church continues. Souls must be saved through the power of the gospel. That is God’s way of showing the world the power of His love and the purpose of His Son.
Looking at how God has continued to bless His people with courage and faith, there is a need for the family of God to remember its commitment to the will of the Father. God has remained constant in His love and He expects His children to continue their commitment to His kingdom. One such example is the reciprocation of gifts received from the Father in the manner of laying aside the bounty of giving. The churches of Macedonia were a great example to the early Christians in their example of sacrifice. In the face of a great trial of affliction, the brethren abounded in the liberality of their giving. They did not allow the present distress to dissuade them from showing God their joy in the face of deep poverty. First, they gave of themselves and then to the Lord in actions of gratitude. Paul is admonishing the church at Corinth to follow the pattern of the Macedonian churches to give as they purpose in their hearts, not grudgingly or of necessity but cheerfully pleasing God.
Laying aside the contribution to the Lord is a way to show faith and courage in the dark days of COVID-19. The work of the church will continue and His people remain obligated to fulfill their role in laying aside a gift required by the Lord. It comes from a purposed heart that trusts in the providence of the Lord. Giving during the days of peace was easy; having a trusting heart to do so in these troubled times shows a greater faith. God will generously provide all the needs of His children. They will always have everything they need and plenty left over to share with others. Christians will be enriched in every way so that they can always be generous. And when a faithful child of God ministers their gifts to those who need them, they will thank God. Don’t forget to show loyalty to the Father.