The Freewill Offering
by Berni Dymet
Ezra 2:68-69 As soon as they came to the house of the LORD in Jerusalem, some of the heads of families made freewill offerings for the house of God, to erect it on its site. According to their resources they gave to the building fund sixty-one thousand darics of gold, five thousand minas of silver, and one hundred priestly robes.
There’s nothing worse than a gift that’s given begrudgingly. Because the whole point of a gift is that the giver wants to bless the person receiving it. So when the giver’s grumpy – the gift becomes an empty gesture, even an insult.
I was spending some time in the Old Testament the other day and these familiar words just caught my eye – a freewill offering. Now, there are all sorts of sacrifices to God in the Old Testament. Some were mandatory – but others weren’t . Those others are called freewill offerings.
And, well, it just all made sense. Sometimes God wants me to do something that’s inconvenient. Something that’s hard. Something even that hurts. Something that costs me.
Perhaps to love someone who doesn’t deserve it. Whatever. And I can grumble about it. But when I grumble – I’m robbing Him of the gift.
What He wants I think – is a freewill offering. Something that I give to Him – out of my own free will. Something that comes from my heart.
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