By Sharla Langston
Women by nature are givers. We give care to those we love, and time to the people and causes that mean a lot to us. For most women, we give too much, often leaving us exhausted and frayed. Many of us operate at the outer limits of our energy and resources and end up marginalizing the time we give to ourselves and to God.
So what if we gave more intentionally and made a greater impact? Elisa Morgan’s book She Did What She Could is a great encouragement for us to make the most of our time, our resources—including our financial blessings—our circumstances and our identity.
She Gave What She Could.
God had purposeful and pivotal roles for women from the beginning of time. Eve to bring the first newborn into the world. Deborah to deliver justice. Bathsheba to mother a great King. Rahab and Esther to save God’s people from peril. Mary to give birth to our Savior. Dorcus and Priscilla to help start the early Church and Mary of Bethany to be the first to see Jesus after his resurrection. God remains purposeful in His plans for women in the Kingdom. Could it be that God is resourcing women so that through their hearts and through their hands the world will experience a wave of generosity in His name?
As Elisa shows us in Chapter 2, we are called to action. Action puts our passions into play. Mary of Bethany used the gift of expensive perfume to anoint the feet of Jesus. Extravagant? Yes. Unusual? Yes. As Pastor Tim Keller says, it was an act of “promiscuous generosity.” When is the last time you gave in an uninhibited, unrestrained way? What can you do that is extravagant for our Savior?
Mary gave nard – a gift calculated to be worth almost a year’s salary in her times. What is your nard? Is it a tithe? More? Could it be a bonus at work, or passing up purchasing a new car for a slightly used one? What about forgoing a vacation for the opportunity to go on a mission trip? Or simply skipping that next latte or new blouse to support a child in school? What is the last sacrifice you made for God’s Kingdom?
You cannot give someone else’s gift. God is calling you to give from your own pocket, your own family, and your own unique passion for serving the Lord. Giving is a sweet intimacy you share with Jesus and is your grateful response to the One who gave all. How has God blessed you so that you can bless another?
In Chapter 10 Elisa asks, “How has God redeemed who you are in such a way that it can be invested, all of it, for His purposes?” He gives you a discerning heart and shows you many great needs. Are you choosing to align your giving with the passions God has developed in your heart? What would it look like to give intentionally to make a greater impact?