– by Rick Warren
Based on what we know about the rest of the world and how they live, would you consider those of us living in America to be unusually blessed? I think we’d all have to admit that our country—even with its present social and economic challenges—has been blessed by God.
That’s wonderful—but with blessing comes responsibility. If we want to take those responsibilities seriously, we’d be wise to look at the four laws of God’s blessing:
1. Our blessings should flow to others. Some people have the mindset that God has blessed them just so they can be happy and comfortable. But that’s not so. The Bible teaches us that we are blessed so that we will bless others. God’s promise to Abraham in Genesis 12:2 was: “I will make of you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.” Blessings must flow outwardly.
2. When we bless others, God takes care of our needs. There’s almost nothing God won’t do for the person who really wants to help other people. In fact, God guarantees a particular blessing for the one who is willing to share what he’s been given instead of hoarding his wealth. In Luke 18:29-30 Jesus said, “Truly, I tell you, there is no man who has left his home or parents or brothers or wife or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who shall not receive many times more in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life.” When you care about helping other people, God assumes responsibility for your problems. And that’s a real blessing, for he’s much better at handling your difficulties than you are.
3. Our blessings to others will come back on us. Luke 6:38 tells us, ” Give, and it will be given to you: Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will men give unto you. For with the measure you use, it will be measured unto you” The more you try to bless other people in the world around you, the more God says, “I’m going to pour blessings out on you. We’ll play a little game here. Let’s see who will win. Let’s see who can give the most. The more you bless others, the more I’m going to bless you in return.” You cannot out-give God.
4. More is expected of those who have more. Jesus said it this way in Luke 12:48b: “For to whom much is given, of him much shall be required. And from him to whom much was entrusted, much will be asked.” Would you agree that, based on the blessings of your life, you probably have a greater responsibility than other people in the world? It’s obvious we’ve been given freedom and opportunities that many people don’t have. We’ve been given material and physical and spiritual abundance that a lot of people around the world simply do not have.
Think this through with me. If we’ve been blessed more than the rest of the world, then doesn’t it stand to reason that God would want us to share what we have and care about the rest of the world? Does that make sense? It certainly doesn’t work in reverse. Those who have more are expected to share more.
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California, one of America’s largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times best-seller The Purpose Driven Life. His book The Purpose Driven Church was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
For the original article, visit pastors.com.