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.”
Acts 20:35 NIV
The percentage of Canadians donating to registered charities has hit a new low. In 2000, 25.5 per cent of Canadians donated to charities. By 2019, the latest year of comparable data, that number dropped to 19.0 per cent. Canadians are also donating a smaller share of their income than they did in previous years. Collectively, Canadians contributed 0.53 per cent of their household income to registered charities in 2019—down from 0.60 per cent in 2000 and a steep drop from the peak of 0.72 per cent in 2006.
The moment we come to faith in Jesus Christ, everything changes. He changes the eternal trajectory of our lives and gives us a new heart, a new direction, new passions and new love for others. Our focus changes from our own needs, desires and demands, and centres on Jesus and others. Jesus is our example – He who is God Himself did not consider equality with God something to grasp onto, but made Himself nothing, never demanding His own rights, but quietly laying down His life for us. The apostle Paul understood this, and in his farewell speech to the Ephesian elders he says this in Acts 20:35: “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.”’ Just as Jesus did, Paul gave himself fully to others, and we are called to do the same. We are called to set aside our own selfish desires and help others. It really is more blessed to give of ourselves to others than be focused on what we want and feel we deserve.
These have been words from the heart.