Published by EABooks Publishing
How does it make you feel when you give to a charity, a ministry, or directly to a person in need? Do you give from abundance? Has it ever hurt to give? Have you ever made a personal sacrifice at cost to your own security and comfort?
You’ve often heard, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Has this been your experience?
Judy Madsen Johnson shares lessons learned from both aspects of giving. She began studying her correct role as a Christian when she was a single mother of three, barely making ends meet.
What she learned, produced a life-changing attitude that led to exciting adventures and faith-stretching exercises. The more she began to give, the more God blessed the gift and the giver. She found innovative ways to share time, talent and money that increased rewards in every area of her life. None of this was her own doing. The answers to her earlier questions came from the Bible. Scriptures like Matthew, chapter 21:22, (KJV) “And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” Philippians 4:19, (RSV).
But there was still another element, supernatural leadings that prompted her to do things that couldn’t have been foreseen. Nudges, or promptings by the Holy Spirit filled in many blanks: She prayed, “How much does a single-engine airplane cost?” Offer them $30,000. The $30,000 was accepted by the owner after coming down $22,000 on his price. And the Rancho del Rey Boys Ranch replaced their wrecked airplane. (Judy had adopted two of their sons, adding to her family of three biological children.)
Again, after receiving her income tax refund, “Who shall I write this check/tithe to: __________ or ____________?” Send it to the family your Sunday School class took up a special offering for (three months ago). The $500 check was the deposit needed for a c-section –the couple had no insurance to cover this expense for their daughter’s birth, and it was due the same day the check arrived.
Even the purchase of a timeshare resulted in a variety of gifts given over the years, and it began by buying a diamond ring from a friend who wanted to donate the proceeds to her church’s building fund. Then, Judy used the ring as a down payment on the timeshare. The final use was given to an abused wife and mother of seven who needed a place of escape until she could make plans for their safe relocation.
Missions took on a more significant meaning as she helped send grandchildren to the foreign field, or made tours herself with groups on a Christian pilgrimage, even behind the Iron Curtain during the waning days of the fall of Communism. Smuggling Bibles into Hungary, 10 suitcases (those containing the Bibles) out of 40 were not searched.
As Judy grappled with a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, she had even more things to give away. The outlook for surgery had mixed doctors’ opinions. And deciding she might not survive the operation, she chose where her clothes, furniture, jewelry, and all the rest were to find new owners. There are some interesting outcomes in the distribution of her worldly possessions and what she kept.
Turn to the book’s Epilogue and read why this book was written. Why now? As a receiver, she has been blessed with innumerable prayers for healing and good health. The cancer seems hidden or gone as of this writing. Perhaps too soon to declare it cured, but the author considers each day an extension of God’s grace and mercy. It is a gift. And she prays not to waste it.