The “hundred-fold return” on giving is a reality, but obedience is required.
Isaiah 1:19 – If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land.
My ministry officially began for me in 1971. Over the ensuing years, the main thing was growing, learning, walking in obedience, overcoming many traditions that had ensnared my Christian walk, and building a foundation that would stand the test of time. God was, and still is, faithful. In those early years, I did not know what a mentor was. A spiritual father was almost unknown. Still, God was faithful. He taught me, guarded me, put some awesome influencers in my path, kept me, sustained me, blessed, and promoted me. For all that, I am eternally and joyously grateful.
In those years, I was a “tent-making” preacher. I had a job, often working in my own entrepreneurial business, as ministry was often infrequent, and knowing how to believe God for ministry needs was just developing. I had attended a meeting at a local church, and in that meeting the Lord spoke to my heart to give the money in my pocket to man and his wife. All I had was seven dollars, but I knew the voice of the Lord in my heart. I obeyed and gave them the seven dollars. This was on a Wednesday evening, and I had two more days at work that week, but now with no money to buy any lunch. For the next two days, one of my co-workers bought my lunch without knowing what I had done. On Friday evening, I attended a Bible-study conducted by a local minister I knew well. At the close of the meeting, a brother approached me, shook my hand, and pressed something into my hand. He said, “The Lord told me to give this to you.” I received it, agreed with him in prayer for his harvest, and put the check he gave me in my pocket. Later as the Bible teacher and I were having coffee, I remembered the check in my pocket. I took it out, looked at it, and said to my friend, “Well look at that. Seventy dol…..SEVEN HUNDRED DOLLARS!” There was more than a one hundred-fold return on my gift.
I realized that I had obeyed the Lord according to Mark 10:17-31, and He honored His word to me. He always does. Oh, by the way. That gift I received paid for my first ministry sound system completely, including the gift of a lavalier microphone from the salesman, and paid for the parking of my van I was using to haul the equipment. Once again, obedience won out. The week before, I could not have begun to afford that system (in the mid-seventies). But after being obedient to the leading of the Lord to give according to Mark 10, there it was; all mine. Let it be known, it IS possible to turn “led” into gold.
Manna for Today – Isaiah 1; 3 John 2; Exodus 13:18; Exodus 15:13-18; Isaiah 48:21-22; Romans 8:14; Isaiah 55:11-13; Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 4:8; 1 Peter 1:7