In the late 1800’s, Sir Randolph Churchill returned a favor to a Scottish boy by affording him the opportunity to attend medical school. Almost after 50 years later, his son, Winston Churchill was at the point of death with pneumonia. He was given a shot of penicillin and made a remarkable recovery. The Scottish young man was Alexander Fleming, who discovered the miracle drug penicillin. Sir Randolph did not just give Dr. Fleming an education, but rather invested in his future as well. The investment yielded a huge dividend in that it saved the life of his son and many others fifty years later.
When a person is born again, the presence and power of the Holy Spirit produces a change of desires, a change of motives, and a change of perspective. The internal changes that occur in the human heart are demonstrated when believers are changed from “takers” to “givers”. We have a desire to bless the Lord and others. The giving process began when we did the same as the believers in Macedonia who first gave themselves to the Lord (2 Cor. 8:5).
We never know how God will take what is given from a willing heart and multiply its usefulness. Decades ago, a man in Minneapolis donated a religious painting to his church. It was used to decorate a Sunday School classroom for years until it was recognized as a rare work of art by Pieter Pourbus, a Flemish artist, valued at $300,000. The gift to the Lord was worth far more than he ever imagined. The value of our service may not be revealed as dramatically as with this painting, but we can be assured that every act of ministry done in the Lord’s service is of great value. His Kingdom’s work will be advanced; lives will be changed; and the Lord will be honored by being faithful stewards of His blessings. Therefore, by beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain. (I Cor. 15:58)
- Rev. John Hamm