Join us today for an episode about the reason first fruits are important...
Today's episode is focused on Proverbs 3: 1-12...
In today’s spiritual foundation episode about developing your influence, I talk with you about Proverbs 3: 1-12. I talk about why living sacrificially doesn’t mean being foolish but it does mean living without fear…
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Episode 1067: First Fruits
[00:00:00] Scott Maderer: Thanks for joining me on episode 1067 of the inspired stewardship podcast. I'm
[00:00:07] Shannon Miles: Shannon Miles from Balay. I challenged you to discover your calling and find your third option so you can be empowered to live every day to the fullest. One way to be inspired to do that is to listen to this, the inspired stewardship podcast with my friend and Scott Mader.
[00:00:23] Scott Maderer: Doing what? This kind of passage. And again, there's dozens of these in the Bible is pointing out that part of giving in faith is this idea of giving over before you actually know that everything has been taken care of doing it in a way that actually challenges you a little. Not doing it in a stupid or unwise way.
[00:00:50] Welcome. And thank you for joining us on the inspired stewardship podcasts. If you truly desire to become the person who God wants you to be, then you must learn [00:01:00] to use your time, your talent and your treasures for your true calling in the inspired stewardship podcast. We'll learn to invest in yourself, invest in others and develop your infant.
[00:01:12] So that you can impact the world.
[00:01:16] And today's spiritual foundation episode about developing your influence. I talk with you about Proverbs chapter three, verses one through 12. I talk about why living sacrificially doesn't mean being foolish, but it does mean living without fear. Proverbs three verses one through 12. Says, my son do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments for length of days and years of life and peace, they will add to you.
[00:01:46] Let not steadfast love and faithfulness for sake, you buying them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man trust in the Lord with all your [00:02:00] heart and do not lean on your own understands. In all your ways, acknowledge him and he will make straight your paths.
[00:02:08] Be not wise in your own eyes, fear the Lord and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones. Honor the Lord with your wealth and with you, the first fruits of all your produce, then your bore barns will be filled with plenty and your vats will be bursting with wine.
[00:02:28] My son do not despise the Lord's discipline or value weary of his reproof for the Lord. Reproves him, whom he loves as a father, the son, and whom he delights. Now this idea of first fruits show. And a lot of different places in the Bible, this idea of giving over from your wealth and from the first fruits of all that you produce, it shows up in different ways and [00:03:00] for an agrarian society that was living in a way where they were basically growing.
[00:03:06] Fruit and vines and crops and wheat and barley and all of these things. It made sense to understand the idea of giving over of the first fruits, meaning the things that you had harvested early, that the best of things, you also hear it in reference to things like. Cattle and sheep and giving over the perfect specimen, giving over the thing that is the best and giving that over to God first.
[00:03:38] And this shows up time and time again, because the idea here is that giving over your best and giving over what comes first is a little sacrificial in your approach to giving, because think about it. If you. Begun to harvest your crops and you give over the first part that you harvest or the best part that you [00:04:00] harvest, and then something happens and the rest of those crops are wiped out.
[00:04:05] Now you have to go without, and I think we do that in modern times too. We often think I'll do my budget and I'll live on everything I've got. And then I'll give away. What's left over. Or I'll plan my day and I'll play on all of my time, but then I'll find some time around the margins.
[00:04:24] And that's where all volunteer at my church or I'll volunteer at a charity. And I'll give of my time, or I've got certain skills and abilities, but first I'm going to put those skills and abilities to use in a way that serves me. And then with what time and energy and effort I have left over, I'll actually do something that serves the wider community or that serves God.
[00:04:50] But the truth is what the. Doing what? This kind of passage. And again, there's dozens of these and the Bible is pointing out that part of giving [00:05:00] in faith is this idea of giving over before you actually know that everything has been taken care of doing it in a way that actually challenges you a little bit, not doing it in a stupid or unwise way.
[00:05:18] Does it mean that you just give over everything you have and just hope for the best? It does mean that you're planning for the future. You're working hard. You're being a good steward with all that God has given you. But the thing of it is you're still doing it in a way that you're trusting that the plan that God has well work out, you're trusting that at the end of the day, there will still be a new.
[00:05:46] I see it a lot in budgets where people say I'll start giving. After I fill in the blank. After I get out of debt, after I save up a certain amount of money after I do whatever. And there's always [00:06:00] another after the same thing happens with time. I'll start volunteering after I retire. I'll start volunteering after this has happened in my job.
[00:06:10] And yet what happens is when that event happens, there's still something else that takes precedence. There's still something else that is more important because part of giving this way, giving over of the first fruits is developing the habit and the mindset and the heart. For generous giving without fear for thinking about the fact that at the end of the day, there's always someone who has less than.
[00:06:36] There's always someone who has more than me and all I'm called to do is take care of what God has blessed me with. And part of taking care of that is recognizing that others have needs and giving over to help those serve their needs. And again, that could be giving time that could be giving talent that could be giving treasures.
[00:06:57] And we'll talk some about all three of [00:07:00] those, this one. But it's about giving in a way that is sacrificial because it's not foolish, but it is without fear. It's at the end of the day, if something comes along and wipes out the crops that will still work out. I don't know how, and I don't know why, but because I've built a community because I've been doing this generous giving for a long time, oftentimes it shows up in the form of other people coming around you to help.
[00:07:31] They know that you've given over of your first fruits and now the crops have been wiped out and you need help and they're willing to help because you've built that community and those relationships. So the truth is when you think about giving a first fruits, it means putting, giving at the top. Of your priority list, recognizing that part of serving your family and serving yourself and serving God and serving your neighbor [00:08:00] is about finding ways to give whether that's giving to the church, whether that's giving to a charity, whether that's giving of your time, whether that's giving of your talent and your energies, or whether that's giving of your money.
[00:08:12] It's about finding ways to give back to the wider community. And that's part of what we're called to do, because that's what chains changes our heart to be focused on generosity, on caring and on love. Thanks for listening.
[00:08:33] Thanks so much for listening to the inspired stewardship podcast as a subscriber and listener, we challenge you to not just sit back and passively. But act on what you've heard and find a way to live your calling. If you enjoy this episode, do me a favor, go over to facebook.com/inspired stewardship and [00:09:00] like our Facebook page and market that you'd like to get notifications from us so that we can connect with you on Facebook and make sure that we're serving you to the best of our ability.
[00:09:13] With time and tips there until next time, invest your time, your talent and your treasures. Develop your influence and impact the world.
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In today's episode, I talk with you about:
Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; - Proverbs 3: 9