A Beautiful Thing - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas 
Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
Manage Your Subscription -- Subscribe/Unsubscribe
Contact Us About Your Subscription
Have you been blessed by one of these "Beautiful Thing" devotionals across these five weeks?  Have you been touched by one of the songs or inspired by one of the sermons?  How has God challenged you as you've been praying about your involvement in the campaign?  You've been reading these daily devotionals -- and now it's YOUR turn!  In this week's sermon, Pastor Tom wants to read as many notes as time will allow.  Write him at tom@hbcaustin.org.
CLICK HERE for more information
Hillcrest Baptist Church

Day 6 Devotional (Week 5)
Saturday, May 14, 2011

"But who am I and who are my people, that they should be able to give as generously (willingly KJV) as this?  Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.  O Lord our God, as for all this abundance that we have provided for building you a temple for your Holy Name, it comes from your hand, and all of it belongs to you." -- I Chronicles 29:14, 16 (NIV)

There is an old saying that "possession is nine-tenths of the law."  It is an important concept in establishing ownership rights, in that there is an assumption that the one who possesses something must be the owner absent strong evidence to the contrary.

In God's economy, however, there is no link between possession and ownership.  As David and his people understood, all they had came from and belonged to God.  This is a recurring theme seen throughout the Bible.  Job, too, understood God's sovereign right of ownership as he proclaimed, "The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord."  An understanding of this truth enabled David and his people to give out of their abundance and Job, in his time of deepest despair, to offer praise to God.  In 2 Corinthians, Paul teaches that God gives generously, that we in return can give generously so that God will be praised.  Tests of faith come not only in hard times, but in times of abundance as well.  But no matter the circumstances, we should always conduct every aspect of our lives in a way that will bring praise to our Lord.

Eight years ago while working through an unfortunate divorce and at the same time paying for the wedding of my oldest daughter, my younger daughter asked if I was tithing.  Facing what I felt at the time to be an uncertain financial future, I replied that I was giving but not tithing, to which she quickly responded that I should trust God and "just do it."  I did, and praise God, He has never once failed to provide for His tithe.

At the time Cindy and I began searching for a new church home, we had just started planning to remodel our kitchen, while at the same time working as best we could to become debt free.  I told Cindy I was not interested in affiliating with a church with a building program.  God obviously had different plans for us, as we were led to join Hillcrest.  And now, as we reconsider our plans, priorities and financial commitment to the "rebuilding" of His temple, we hear, once again, those simple words of wisdom, "just do it!"

Father, we thank you that you have generously given to us, providing for our needs, and through us for the needs of others and for your Church.  We acknowledge to you that all we possess belongs to you and ask that you give us faith to generously give; to the glory and honor of your Holy Name.  Amen.

Prepared by Byron and Cindy Buescher

To prepare spiritually during our “A Beautiful Thing” campaign, you will receive a devotional written by our own members every Monday through Saturday for five weeks. To opt out of these daily devotionals, click here. To read the announcements from the “ABT Weekly Update,” click here.