Acts 20:33-35: Paul, a giving leader.

33 I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. 34 You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions. 35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

As a leader, your focus must continually be on giving. No-one said this would be easy, but it is necessary, and in truth it is a blessing.

Giving takes many forms. It is not just about money. It also entails the giving of time, the giving of help and support, the giving of yourself. There are so many ways to do it.

Now here’s a harsh reality of life: although we should treat others as we would desire to be treated ourselves, others do not always respond in kind. I think one of the toughest decisions for a leader (indeed for anyone) is to say, ‘Whatever you do; regardless of your response, I will try to do the right thing.’ You can’t control anyone else’s behaviour – only your own.

Jesus exemplified a lifestyle of giving. He also taught that ‘’It is more blessed to give than to receive.’’ This is a fact and experience shows it to be true.

Paul followed Jesus and was one of life’s givers.

My friend, Evelyn Hutchinson, who died recently, was also like this. She was not well known. She was a quiet, unassuming Christian woman. Through all the years I knew her she was deeply immersed in the needs and concerns of others. She quietly gave her heart away all the time. When, in the weeks before she died, she received lots of notes and cards containing lovely words, she was genuinely surprised. I wasn’t! That kind of humble, self-forgetful kindness is all too rare; but such people leave their mark. I doubt Evelyn ever thought about what was coming back. Her instinct was just to give, and many rose up and called her ‘Blessed.’

PRAYER: Help me Lord to take your words at face value, and live my life by them.