You Did That on Purpose!!! Part 2

by | Jan 11, 2013

“…Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”  II Corinthians 9:7 

(Click here if you’d like to read Part I)

In history, there were two young men. They weren’t exactly contemporaries, but they were only a few thousand years apart; and Goldthey did have a lot in common.  They were both from very wealthy families, they both had bright futures ahead of them, and they both died young.  Now the differences between these young men, relate to what they did with their riches.

One of the young men, very influential, and wealthy beyond our wildest dreams, died when he was only 17.  When he was buried, those around him chose to encase him in his wealth.  His burial area was covered with gold, the inside burial area was covered with gold, the area inside that was covered with gold, he was covered with gold, and he had gold stuff all around him, there was a TON of gold…… actually there was more than a ton, there were multiple tons! The pity was he was supposed to take all that gold with him!  I guess he forgot it on his way out.

The other young man, born into a family of wealth and prosperity, had a very different end. He died young as well, but though he was also wealthy,  his end was in stark contrast to the first young man’s. His place of burial was obscure, overgrown and valueless…….. except for the words written on his tombstone:

“Apart from faith in Christ, there is no explanation for such a life.”

This young man had done the unthinkable, the foolish, the irresponsible– he had cast away fortune and potential in order to give himself to God.

King TutI read an article that compared these two young men, the first being King Tut, who died entombed in unbelievable treasures, and in the end had nothing but unending torment. The other, William Borden, who died in a foreign land alone, buried in a simple grave; but in the end, I am convinced he was rewarded with wealth untold.

Now when I read about people like William Borden, my initial thought is, “Well, he’s just more spiritual than I am, and he actually had money to give away, so his life really doesn’t apply to me.”  But sorry, I’d like to cop out with that thought myself, but all he did, was follow the pattern we were talking about in the last post.

I. In order to purpose in your heart, you have to believe it in your heart.
II. In order to believe it in your heart, it has to actually be in your heart!

Here, I’ll show you.

We’re talking about purposing in our hearts.  That’s what he did.

“I’m going to give my life to prepare for the mission field.”
He made that declaration, and a friend responded with surprise that he was”throwing himself away as a missionary.”
In response, Bill wrote two words in the back of his Bible: “No reserves.”
He refused to keep anything back from the possibility of investing. Everything he had was available for use.

YaleWhen William got to Yale he stood out, but not because he was rich.  “He came to college far ahead, spiritually, of any of us. He had already given his heart in full surrender to Christ and had really done it. We who were his classmates learned to lean on him and find in him a strength that was solid as a rock, just because of this settled purpose and consecration.”

“Settled purpose and consecration” There it is, and where did he get that settled purpose?
While he was at Yale, one of the things he did was start praying with one of his classmates every morning.  Nothing crazy, just a little prayer time.  This is what his classmate said: “He would read to us from the Bible, show us something that God had promised and then proceed to claim the promise with assurance.”
“Claim the promise with assurance.”
That is how you get the foundation for purposing in your heart.

William dedicated himself to investing in God’s kingdom, and the impact he had was incredible. But it’s the same impact God desires everyone of us to have.  BordenThe power doesn’t come from the person, it comes from the God behind the person. God’s power is always ready; it’s our faith that’s in question.
When Borden graduated, he turned down several high paying job offers. That is when he penned in the back of his Bible the second of his three famous phrases, “No retreats.”
He didn’t have any intention of changing his mind, and he went on to go serve as a missionary to Muslims in China. He died on his way there. He was 25 years old.
This was written of him at a later time: “A wave of sorrow went round the world . . . Borden not only gave (away) his wealth, but himself, in a way so joyous and natural that it (seemed) a privilege rather than a sacrifice”

A cheerful giver.  He gave with joy, not grudgingly or of necessity. Not with the attitude of the martyr but with the heart of the investor who knows the returns he is going to receive! That is the result of a confidence in God’s promises, and a heart that is purposed to give to God’s Kingdom.

Before he died, he at some point added the third phrase to the page in his Bible. Underneath the words “No reserves” and “No retreats,” he wrote: “No regrets.” He wrote those words on this earth, and they were real to him, but when he got to heaven, I think that in an instant they took on a depth of truth that we can only dream of till we get up there.

This is the type of life that we are called to, every one of us. Not necessarily copying each action of someone like William Borden, but emulating the principles of taking hold of God’s promises, purposing in our hearts, and giving with cheerfulness and confidence.

If that is our life, then what was said of him, will be said of us too:

“Apart from faith in Christ, there is no explanation for such a life.”

~Laura O.

1 Comment

  1. Matthew H

    Thanks Laura! This post challenged me. It is amazing to see the difference between two men with such similar positions in life, one the king of the wealthiest nation on earth, the a well-placed man from a wealth and respected family. One is remembered for his untold wealth, the other is remembered for the far greater wealth he so freely distributed! What a challenge, whether or not we have earthly riches like either of these, when we apply the determining factor, we can give away greater riches than we ourselves, or either of these men for a fact, ever possessed!

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