Devotions By Jan


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wJimmy Yu at LA pen showScripture for Today: Matthew 6:3-4 “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.”

No one in my immediate family is left handed with the exception of one son-in-law.  I do not normally think about it unless we are being seated at the table.  The “left-handers” usually prefer an end seat so as not to bump elbows with their neighbor while eating.  Being left handed was considered unlucky or evil in many cultures in the past.  Thankfully, most western cultures no longer force the use of the right hand.  But according to tradition, an itchy left hand indicates you will lose money.  And itchy right hand indicates you will receive money!

In our verse for today the itchy hand much be the left one.  The right hand is reaching out and sharing with the poor.  This act of kindness and generosity is to be so discreet as to keep the left hand unawares.  Jesus spoke these words in response to the proud display of giving in the synagogues and streets.  Jesus could see the motivation in the heart of these hypocrites.  They were giving in order to be seen and admired for their righteousness.   No reward awaited them in heaven.  They already had theirs in the admiration of others.

Discreet giving without exciting attention helps me keep my motivation pure.  It is too easy to look for accolades for my generosity.  It is not important for anyone to know about my gift except the Lord.  He always sees and I can feel His pleasure when it is sincerely given for His honor and His glory.

Lord, may my giving bring glory only to You.

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