Proverbs 11:25 The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.
Like most of us, each December I generally like to set some goals for the next year. You know, some way to measure the success of the year and something to work toward.
One of those years, my wife Michele and I had decided to set a savings goal we wanted to hit. To be honest, there was no chance, barring a supernatural intervention, that we would even come close to that goal, but we set it anyhow.
We were a few weeks into the new year with our new goals when we had a paradigm shifting moment. It came as we were soaking up some time with the Lord at a minister’s conference in Fort Worth, TX. Sitting there minding our own business, enjoying God’s presence, the Holy Spirit spoke something to our hearts that made absolutely no sense.
He said, “I want you to take that savings goal you set and turn it into a giving goal.”
My first response was to laugh it off and blame it on something not settling right from lunch. But the thought wouldn’t go away. Realizing that it was definitely not lunch and that God was definitely speaking, my tactic of weaseling out this shifted from denial to rationalization. There was no way in the world I could save this much money, so there was absolutely no chance we would be able to give that much. But like all my other arguments with God, He won. So with no idea how in the world this would be remotely possible, we committed to the Lord to a giving goal for the first time in our lives.
Not really sure where to begin, we just started giving at every opportunity and any time we saw a need. We actually began having an absolute blast hearing from God and moving in the moment as He led us. It was honestly so much fun that we forgot about the giving goal.
I’ll never forget August of 2013 as I sat down to update the spreadsheet I had created back in January to track our giving. As I punched in some new numbers, I glanced down at the total to see that we had just surpassed our goal! And five months early! I couldn’t believe it. How did this happen? Needless to say, Michele and I did a big time “praise the Lord” dance in our little three bedroom one bath house.
What happened next is one hundred percent truth and God gets all the glory. Within a month of hitting our giving goal, though a small series of events, God quadrupled our income! Because of that we were able to pay off all our debt by the end of the year, and by March of the next year, we had more than our savings goal in the bank. Plus, we actually ended up giving 150% of that year’s giving goal.
Now, I’m not saying you’re going to have a story like ours. I’m not trying to sell a “Quadruple Your Income” book, but I do want you to see the principle in this verse. When we set out to refresh others, God will see to it that we are refreshed. Don’t limit this to just finances though. If you refresh others with encouragement or opportunity or kindness, God will see to it that you are refreshed as well. It’s a principle of God’s Kingdom!
So what area of your life could you use some refreshing? In that season of our lives, we were hurting financially. The way God got us out was to focus on refreshing others. So let me ask again. Do you have an are you could use refreshed? Pinpoint an area, then set a goal to make that happen for someone else as often as physically possible, then watch what happens!
Father, I’m so thankful that you are a refreshing God and that you want me to be refreshed. Show me an area I need a fresh touch of your provision. When you do, I’ll do my best to make that happen for everyone around me. As I set out to refresh others, I know you’ll refresh me. In Jesus’ name, amen!