PRESCHOOL & KINDERGARTEN KIDS & FAMILIES date
It is our desire to give our entire family back to Him.
Inspire (for parents) Until just recently, I really only had one definition, one expression, of the word worship and it usually didn’t take place in my life unless there was music involved. It wasn’t until I met my wife, Keri, that my eyes were opened to see the many different expressions of worship—particularly when it came to the area of giving.
how I will give “all of me” back to Him in an act of worship. As my wife and I begin this very new journey of parenthood, it’s our hope that our son will come to understand giving as reaching far beyond check writing and that he will see in us the true hearts of worshippers. It is our desire to give our entire family back to Him—we want to be worshipful and cheerful givers financially; we want to give of our time and energy to people in need; and, most of all, we want be open each day to the specific ways, big and small, God asks us to give generously.
Giving has always been a natural rhythm in my life, but if I’m honest, I had spent much of my life giving (or tithing) simply so I could check it off of my list because I knew it was required of me. As I began to make giving a true act of worship, it forced me to also realize by Tommy Larson how limited I had been in my expressions of worship. Why had I spent so much time focusing on tithing as my one and only form of giving? Didn’t God thew 6:19–21; require all of me, and not just my e 21:1–4; Mat uk L : re tu ip Worship) cr S income? I knew I was giving with 9:7 (Giving as 2 Corinthians ive Generously my income, but what about the time Wants Me to G od G t: in Po n Mai ily to He has given me? What about my allow your fam is designed to ren ild ch ur marriage? And how could I give back yo This resource Word before ’s od G nts in re e pa is for have tim to Him the son He had miraculously ause God’s plan ec B . ith, ch fa ur s n’ ch re attend their child granted us after years of prayer? al nurturers of n tu re iri ild sp ch e ur th yo be to spiritually, ow gr u yo as I don’t have concrete answers to these at we know th ally as well. questions, but the questions themselves will grow spiritu are a path to understanding, practically,
ted Getting Star
Equip (for parents) The Lord is very clear on giving in both the Old and New Testaments. In the Old Testament, the people had requested an amount they were to give as a portion of the first fruits. The tithe, or tenth, was established as a percentage to offer to the Lord. This tenth was to be the first 10 percent of all income—including harvest, cattle, the selling of property, and wages earned for each day’s work. This tenth was then broken down and distributed among the priests and Levites, the treasury, and the poor. In addition, each person was to give generously to the needs of others within their community. God had provided enough for His people—none should be poor and without. He commanded kindness and generosity from His people in the treatment of the priests and Levites, for they would not inherit wealth from land. As for those who were from foreign lands, or already inhabiting the land in which His people were to dwell, He directed the Israelites to care for the strangers with kindness. To anyone who asked for help, they were commanded by God to offer what was asked for or needed. The Lord counted it as sin against those who had refused to help. Although a tithe is not mentioned in the New Testament, the offerings of first fruits and generosity continue. In Luke 21, Jesus talks about the heart of giving to the Lord. To give generously is not a request from the Lord, but a command. For if God is the provider, then as His people we are freed to give generously to others, knowing that He will provide for all of our needs. Giving is a matter of the heart between God and His children. “You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. ‘For God loves a person who gives cheerfully’” (2 Corinthians 9:7 NLT).
Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others. 1 Corinthians 10:24
Support (for parents & kids) Together, as a family, read through some biblical examples of giving as worship in Luke 21:1–4 and Matthew 6:19–21. Ask your children, Why was the widow’s offering so special to Jesus? What does Jesus mean when He talks about treasures on earth? Talk with your children about what it means to give sacrificially (giving that costs you something, not just giving what is extra). Then, give your children an opportunity to give as an act of worship to God. Pray and wait with them as they consider what they have to give (toys, video games, clothes, etc.). Ask them to think about which one of these things they might want to give to God. When they come to church this week, have them bring the item they selected. They will have a chance to offer God items that will then be given away to other children in need. Remind your children that what they just heard from the Bible about giving is part of The Big God Story, and they’ll hear more about giving as worship in church this week. End your time together by praying and asking God to continue to teach you about giving and to make your hearts generous and willing to give to Him.
© 2011 David C Cook. TruResources are developed in partnership with ROCKHARBOR Church and a national network of family and children’s ministry leaders. All rights reserved.