“…the primary lesson to be learned on earth, as exemplified by God, is to every day share at least a little of your earthly possessions with worthy, needy persons, or, still better, with worthy, needy Divine Causes.”
-Paramhansa Yogananda in the Second Coming of Christ
When we give to others, whether it’s a smile, a gift, our love, time, energy, or consideration, it sparks a flow of altruism and appreciation. Specifically giving is a positive and unifying action. Not only the recipient gains when we give, the giver also feels happy and delighted. Giving spreads joy and well-being, supporting and uplifting all involved.
In the act of giving, we are thinking and caring for the needs of others. Our own needs and wants are temporarily at least, not under consideration. We are asking ourselves is there something I could do? Then figuring out what that might be. Giving is a selfless act, a spiritual act. Master said when we think of others we forget ourselves, and our problems.
Everything in life, every thought, word, and action has spiritual power and energy. The act of giving sets in motion universal laws of energy and magnetism. Paramhansa Yogananda said, “The instrument is blessed by what flows through it.” Giving opens up the flow of divine abundance, there is an unlimited flow as long as we are open to it. God is an abundant giver and as children of God those gifts flow to us freely. The flow is only stopped when we turn off the faucet.
Considering what happens when we do not cooperate with spiritual law helps us to understand why we suffer. Suppose you throw a heavy object straight up into the air, you know you must move before it comes back down. If you don’t move you will have to deal with the consequences. You don’t take it personally, you don’t blame anything or anyone, because you know that the law of gravity is an irrefutable part of physical reality. Your action or inaction does not change the law of gravity, what it does is change the outcome for you.
The power of giving lies in a simple question, am I open or closed? When we give love, love flows, when we give joy, joy flows. Of course, our karma, circumstances etc., do create challenges for us, where we are not able to be open, but the power of spiritual law is perpetual, the same as the law of gravity. When we close the flow, whatever was, or might have been possible, now becomes remote, inaccessible, maybe impossible. Spiritual law flows like water through an open channel, close the channel and there is no flow. No judgement or guilt, this is simply how it works.
Giving therefore, or any other spiritual assignment, poses a direct challenge to our ego nature, God wants us to learn to trust Him. Tithing is a great example of this. Tithing originally meant giving 10% of the fruits of your labours “back to God” from whence it came. Tithe barns where created to store tithed goods at harvest time. These stores were then used to help those in need, or during famines or other difficult times. In modern terms the fruits of labour are now monetary, so today a tithe means giving 10% of any money that comes in back to the source of ones spiritual inspiration. Usually a church or spiritual institution.
A tithe is not a donation, or a gift, these are chosen, and given where and when we want. A tithe is given regularly, monthly or weekly as money comes in. We don’t see if we can afford to tithe, we tithe. We don’t direct where the money goes, that is God’s part, our part is to give that crucial 10% of our money. This is where the challenge lies. With all spiritual development, growth is directional. We try to meet the challenge where we are, we do what we can do without judgement or guilt, we just keep trying to learn how to cooperate with spiritual law. Our efforts keep us in the flow of God’s loving presence, which then magnetically pulls us ever closer to our goal.
“Give, and it will be given to you. You will have more than enough. It can be pushed down and shaken together and it will still run over as it is given to you. The way you give to others is the way you will receive in return.” – Luke 6:38
“Bring the tenth part into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house. Test Me in this,” says the Lord of All. “See if I will not then open the windows of heaven and pour out good things for you that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” – Malachi 3:10
Giving increases our faith, it helps us to trust God in everything, even with our money. When we allow God into all aspects of our lives, anything is possible. When Christ said, “I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” The disciples asked, “Who then can be saved? Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Thank you God for everything.