Dr. Miranda : Giving in the zone of discomfort (I Kings 17:8)
Dr. Roberto Miranda
SUMMARY: The atmosphere of a congregation is important in maintaining its health and attracting new members. Each member plays a role in maintaining this atmosphere by practicing forgiveness, tolerating differences, and not engaging in negative behavior. In 1 Kings 17, Elijah meets a widow who is desperate and ready to let herself die. He tells her to make him a small cake first, and then promises that her flour and oil will not run out until the Lord makes it rain. The law of development that the author wants to share is that spirit dominates over matter. What happens in the spiritual world affects the material world, and we must understand this principle.
The spiritual and material worlds are connected, and what happens in one affects the other. Giving is an important spiritual law that allows for prosperity in all areas of life. Giving should be a natural ethic of life, not just something to manipulate God for personal gain. Giving in the discomfort zone, when it's inconvenient or risky, is where great miracles can happen. The goal is to absorb the nature of the Father and be a giver from the heart, so that grace can flow from us and bless others. Churches should also adopt a generous attitude and give. The author's ministerial ethics are summarized in Ecclesiastes 11, which encourages giving and generosity.
The key to prosperity in life and in the church is giving generously, even beyond our comfort zone. This is exemplified by Jesus on the cross, who gave everything for our salvation. Giving is a grace from God, and when we give with a glad heart, we open ourselves to a flow of blessings from God. It is not about tithing, but about giving according to our strength and beyond our strength. The Macedonians are praised for their generosity, even though they were poor. The more we give, the more we will receive.
In this sermon, the pastor encourages generosity in all aspects of life, emphasizing the importance of giving to God and others. He shares the story of Elijah and the widow of Zarephath, where the widow's generosity led to blessings and prosperity in her life. The pastor emphasizes that giving should come from a place of discomfort, as this is where the heart of God is unleashed, and encourages the congregation to adopt an ethic of generosity to bless their families, church, and community.
God bless you, my brothers, a pleasure to be with you again this morning. As always, the adoration that you bring before the Lord blesses me a lot and that charges my energy and encourages me to come and share the word with you. They are a congregation, as Pastor Antonio said, absolutely adorable, and I am in love with your children, and with your young people, with all of you, with the great affection that you have shown me to Dr. Diehl, too. Well, we are delighted. We cannot ask for more. Last night the sisters blessed us with delicious cake and well... we haven't stopped eating since we got here. So Glory to the Lord and thank you for all your love. I know that God is going to do great things.
One knows when a congregation is.... the Americans have a word called 'momentum', it comes from the Latin which means like impulse, movement, how it goes, that it has a breakthrough and carries momentum. Like when you start running from a hill and run and run, and it increases, accelerating the movement. You feel that, you feel it in the smile of the people, in the ability to laugh, in the vitality that is shown, in the diversity of ministries, in the new things that are being done, in the enthusiasm of the pastor, the relationship between the pastor and his congregation, the joy of the children, the ease one feels to worship the Lord, many things that are good indicators to the trained eye that there is life and health in a congregation. And you show that.