Remember these verses … ?
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:1-4
I never “got” what that was all about.
I have heard it taught, I have heard it preached, and I have seen it explained. And I nodded along. I tried to get it. But I never really “got” it … “do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing … ” is illogical … is impossible … is nonsense …
Until today and this morning’s post: My unknowing gift offering … and: “Danda” … “I’m here.” … if you haven’t read the post, please do … because I never knew that was a gift, an offering, a giving … until this morning.
And I would love to hear your thoughts – is this something or nothing – have I missed something in seeing “something”?
Because I hear-read-see loads of stuff about “tithing” … about the “rich man” … about pushing camels through the eyes of needles … about “offering” prayer … about “giving” praise … about “worshiping” … about “duty and obligation” … “sacrifice and service” … about “giving back what is his” ….
But isn’t that all just “paying off the debt”? And even if it isn’t … ALL of that is ALWAYS “intentional”. All of that is about a decision to give … about how much … about when … about how …. about where … about “give to who” (and who not).
And even if all that is NOT about “transaction” – then it cannot be done in secret – it can never be my “left hand” never knowing what my “right hand” is doing. Impossible.
But I tried. And the “sense” I made of all that until now … ? Don’t tell my partner, my loved ones, my colleagues, my friends, my …
But all of that is “complicit” and “secretive” and maybe “manipulative” because even the secrecy is “intentional” (and easily deceitful). Which I know is not what Jesus intended – which is why that bit never made sense (and all that “giving stuff” along with it).
Until this morning …
“But I have learned this from a two-year old child: The knowing without “knowing” is a precious gift. And without this knowing without knowing – the rest (the entire bible) will always just be words, questions – and “my proof verses”.
(and my “intentional giving” with it)
So I am beginning to wonder if it should read: “Father, Son (and Grandfather), and Holy
Because I never “got” any of this whilst I was just a “Father”.
68 years old here and still learning as a great-grandfather. I know I’ll never ‘get there’. Thanks for this post. I love how tender it treats our youth.
Hi Tom, thank you. “Still learning” I think is under-rated – googling solves that “problem” nowadays. Yet these small people know so much more than google without knowing google at all!
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