Thursday, November 9: Only what comes from your hand
How we think impacts how we live our whole lives. God wants to transform us, to make us more and more like Jesus, by changing the way we think—what the Bible calls the renewing of our minds. For five weeks, we'll survey five aspects of how God can and will change our minds, along with a prayer challenge for each week.
Read 1 Chronicles 29:14-16
"But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand. We are foreigners and strangers in your sight, as were all our ancestors. Our days on earth are like a shadow, without hope. Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a temple for your Holy Name comes from your hand, and all of it belongs to you."
The people of Israel have just assembled and given hundreds of tons of gold, silver, and precious stones to be used in constructing the temple, after David himself had donated his own personal treasure of hundreds of tons more. As David leads this assembly in prayer, he gives notice that the lavish offering was really no big deal: They were simply returning to God that which he'd given them to take care of. How does David's very literal application of "everything is God's" strike you today? How would it play in our larger culture?
David forcefully expresses that God's people did not own their possessions. Instead, God had entrusted them as caretakers, managers of all his gifts. Ask God today how you can apply this principle not only to your possessions but to your very life.
A prayer for the week
We praise you God, for everything in heaven and earth belongs to you! Help me to see all of life as a gift, and to live generously and faithfully. May my time, my talents, my work, and my wealth be used to bless our broken world and bring honor to the name of Jesus. Amen.