It's not unusual for Christian leaders to become cheerless givers. The crisis surfaces less often with the giving of finances and more often with the giving of oneself. I can't back this up with research data, but I've seen the evidence in many leaders. I've also seen it in myself.
The problem begins subtly, almost imperceptibly. But, once rooted, it eats away like a fungus in a garden.
Christian leaders are generous people. We've seen a need and have responded. We've received a call and have committed ourselves. We give. Generously. Substantially. Sacrificially.
The giving brings Joy. Fulfillment. Satisfaction. The fine rewards of a life invested well.
But somewhere along the way something gets out of whack. Wounded and weary, the joy of giving slips away. Or entitlement sneaks in and steals away what once was thriving in your heart.
The causes? Demanding people who are ever difficult to satisfy. Work demands that leave no margin. Overseers who don't appreciate the sacrifice or see the good intent. An inner world dependent upon the feedback of others, hungry for affirmation, gratitude, rewards.
When the giving gets tough, it's time to take a look at what's gotten out of whack. The Apostle Paul's....
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