I always aim to join the “Ignite Conference” during college days (which is much unexpected because I never thought that Victory Christian Fellowship, the Church that God planted me in, was part of the organizers of this Asian Youth event. Now talked about destiny!). During Christmas season last year, I’m having so much trouble to decide whether if I’m going to save my money for the conference or spend it to buy some gifts for people. God says to spend it and despite of my anxiousness to that money, I decided to obey God with His command with gladness. And I’m happy that I really obeyed Him on that because the joy and gladness that the people respond on those gift giving really gives me hope and love on my “First CHRISTmas Season”. The off and on registration season of the conference makes me worried once again and due to this unemployment stage that I’m in, I truly believe God wants me to improve on my abilities and character as wells as to grow in my relationship with Him so I set some time to attend Bible classes every Sunday. During my first class, I met this mom from our group which happens to be approachable and sweet. We became prayer partners when our Teacher asked us to do a “prophetic prayer” to each other. During those times, I felt that God is in our midst as she starts to pray for provisions and grace to come upon me; that I may get all the things that I asked for Him in a proper place and time. As she poured out those prayers, I started crying and surrendered to God all of my anxiousness and burdens. I told her that those are exactly that I’m praying for a long time. And after our class session ends, out of nowhere she just immediately grab her purse and gave me a 1,000 pesos straight. I just met her few days back but her generosity breaks my anxiousness and leads me to a surprise that I will never forget. I insisted her not to give me the money at first because I don’t want her to think that I’m just crying out for purpose of getting something from anyone but she convinced me that the Lord is the one who asked her to give me such amount of money. Next thing I knew it, I was crying again but with thankfulness with Him for answering my prayer. AT LAST I FINALLY GOING TO REGISTER AT IGNITE CONFERENCE (and it’s too much pa for me to give my Tithes and to buy a birthday gift for a special friend)!!! The seeds that God wants me to plant during Christmas season finally reaps into a very sweet fruit of provision from Him… and a blessed assurance of His faithfulness always gives to fulfillment.
Ever since I start to become a follower of Christ, challenges started to arise in different aspects of my life including in my career and my finances. There’s a lot of highs and lows that I met in my earlier jobs and today as a freelance unemployed licensed-holder, it makes me depend more and more to Jesus for daily provisions to come and more than to what I told in the story, God has been sooo faithful to give more than just what I need, but also the gift abundance and grace for me to move in generosity.
It was few years ago when Victory preached the series called “Overflow” where they talked about the biblical aspects of finance by means of living in the overflow of “BEING RICH” in Christ and how to live in generosity while living a very blessed life. It’s only in this time when I found all the videos of their podcast and learned all those principles that I should apply before when I had my job. But the THING is this:
“Whatever status you’re in, YOU CAN STILL LIVE IN AN OVERFLOW THROUGH CHRIST WHO GIVES YOU THE RICHNESS AND THE ABILITY TO PRODUCE WEALTH.
How to live in the OVERFLOW of being rich in Christ? Here’s what I learned from Ptr. Dennis Sy of Victory Greenhills and what I learned in the Bible during I watch their podcast:
- GOD IS YOUR PROVIDER, NOT YOU AND YOUR SALARY
As for the rich in this present age, change them not to be haughty, not to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, WHO RICHLY PROVIDES US WITH EVERYTHING TO ENJOY. – 1 Timothy 6:17
I have this bad mindset about having a job or a freelance task/work. My first reason will be: to HAVE MONEY. Well it is not bad to aim such goal but the problem lies on what kind of motives we have in terms of money. I tend to say always that I’m poor and I’m in lack of money when the spending starts inviting me in stores, in people and when they asking me to give. When I started walking with Christ, He’s corrects all of my wrong thinking (even during this present time) and lead me to the real Provider of what I’m owning now. Here’s the thing, we can easily prove and deceive ourselves from saying that we are the provider of our own needs. We can reason out our work status and the level of our ability to prove that we deserve such things, such possessions, and such money in our wallets. That’s why generosity is a big issue to many of us. Because we think that we are the no. 1 owner of our money. But the scriptures clearly stated that God is the one who gave us the things that we need to live and enjoy life. More than that, He gave us the ability to produce wealth and He appointed us to become a good steward of His creation. For He is the God who makes the universe and a Father who richly provides for His children. His love and grace for us through Christ makes us live in abundance so that we can move to generosity.
In the podcast, Ptr. Dennis explains our wrong mindset towards God as our Provider. He examples the “Parable of the Prodigal Son” (Luke 15:11-32) as an example of what we think about God in terms of our finances. There’s some few bad theories that Pastor Dennis gave (and hopefully we can change those mindsets):
a. SANTA CLAUSE THEORY
- God only bless good people; that God has a checklist and a favoritism
RIGHT THINKING: It’s not how good we are as children, but how GOOD A FATHER GOD IS.
b. SERVANT/SLAVE THEOLOGY
- God is the boss and you’re just the servant
- Performance-centered mindset where we came to God and ask for a blessing based on what we did.
RIGHT THINKING: THERE’S A COMMON GRACE FOR EVERYONE. All the blessings of God has its place for everyone whether you’re sinner or not.
The right mindset/theology is this:
- SON/DAUGHTER THEOLOGY
For all who are led by the Spirit of God are SONS OF GOD. For you did not receive the SPIRIT OF SLAVERY to fall back into fear, but you have received the SPIRIT OF ADOPTION AS SONS, by whom we cry “ABBA FATHER!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are CHILDREN OF GOD, and if children, then HEIRS-HEIRS OR GOD AND FELLOW HEIRS OF CHRIST, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
Since we’re adopted as SONS/DAUGHTER of God, we can move in the overflow of generosity towards other. You just give away because you know who your provider is. There’s nothing left to fear if you have little or a lot because God is able and willing to give you everything to enjoy which is according to His will. Every time I saw the amount of money that I have, whether it is little or none, I just reflect and be thankful for the things that God provided for me DAILY. The gadgets, the meals that I ate 3-4 times a day, the clothes and the house that we have and this life that I’m living now while I’m typing this article. Now who’s your Daddy now?
Don’t allow money or materials to master over you. Remember who is your Provider and by breaking those mindsets, God can really cast all of your barriers from keeping you from living in the OVERFLOW.