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By Mike Stickler
Many curry favor with a ruler, and everyone is the friend of one who gives gifts.
Do you know someone who is really affluent? I mean, has a financial portfolio that far exceeds your own? ... someone who has even a little bit more than you?
If so, in the back of your mind do you think in that small quiet voice, “I want this guy to like me, maybe he can help me with ______” (you fill in the blank).
This passage in Proverbs reminds me of the age-old thinking that rich people are somehow better off, luckier, or more blessed than we are; when in fact, they are just human beings like the rest of us, plagued with problems, fears, and deceitfully wicked hearts.
Over the years I’ve understood it takes real maturity to look past someone’s wealth, power, or influence to accept them as a person—and just be their friend. To care about them. To minister to them. To offer what you have to them. Genuinely. Generously. Now, some might think that my friend just had a super attention to detail. Well, (as Paul Harvey would say), “And now, the rest of the story ...”
In fact, for more than 20 years now, I’ve been contacted by nonprofit and ministry leaders at least once or twice a week who say (when you boil it down), “if you hook me up with a rich guy, I can take it from there.”
My take on this always is: ‘that kind of thinking is why you don’t / won’t have any affluent people in your circle of friends!’ They’ll simply see the dollars signs in your eyes that reveal you are zeroed in on what can they do for you instead of getting to know them. Well, how would seeing those dollar signs make you feel, if you held it all?
Today’s Generosity Challenge:
In your circle of relationships, is there someone of high net worth? ... OK, someone with more than you? Does this ‘high net worth’ obscure from you the person who has it? What can you do to find the person in there? ...to build a human relationship, person-to-person? ... to find what their needs are and serve them?... essentially, to just be their friend? Ponder a moment on the steps you could take to get the dollar signs out of your eyes and open your heart for them. Write them down here.
About Michael Stickler
Mike is an author, radio host, and a highly sought after motivational speaker. His best-selling book, A Journey to Generosity, is widely acclaimed throughout the Christian community. He is the publisher of Generous Living Magazine and writes for the Christian Post, 'A Generous Life' column.
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