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The Core - Sermon 4


Radical Generosity Changes the World


Core Values

1. People Matter

2. Connected People Grow

3. Growing People Serve

4. Radical Generosity Changes
the World


“The Cookie Thief”

A woman was waiting at an airport
one night,

With several long hours before her
flight.

She hunted for a book in the
airport shop,

Bought a bag of cookies and found
a place to drop.

She was engrossed in her book,
but happened to see,

That the man beside her, as bold
as could be,

Grabbed a cookie or two from the
bag in between,

Which she tried to ignore to avoid
a scene.

She read, she munched cookies,
and watched the clock,

As the gutsy “cookie thief”
diminished her stock.

She was getting more irritated as
the minutes ticked by,

Thinking, “If I weren’t so nice, I’d
blacken his eye!”

With each cookie she took, he took
one too.

When only one was left, she
wondered what he’d do.

With a smile on his face and a
nervous laugh,

He took the last cookie and broke
it in half.

He offered her half, as he ate the
other.

She snatched it from him and
thought, “O brother,

This guy has some nerve, and he’s
also rude.

Why, he didn’t even show any
gratitude!”

She had never known when she
had been so galled,

And sighed with relief when her
flight was called.

She gathered her belongings and
headed for the gate,

Refusing to look back at the
“thieving ingrate.”

She boarded the plane and took
her seat,

Then sought her book, which was
almost complete.

As she reached in her baggage,
she gasped with surprise:

There was her bag of cookies in
front of her eyes!

“If mine are here,” she moaned
with despair,

“then the others were his, and he
tried to share!”

Too late to apologize, she realized
with grief,

That she was the rude one, the
ingrate, the thief.


A. When I read that story it makes me wonder, what kind of giver am I? I think most of us think we’re givers, but what does it truly – really mean to be a giver?


Mark 12:41-44 NLT
Jesus sat down near the collection box in the Temple and watched as the crowds dropped in their money. Many rich people put in large amounts. 42 Then a poor widow came and dropped in two small coins.

43 Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has given more than all the others who are making contributions. 44 For they gave a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she had to live on.”


Lesson 1: Everyone can give something.

A. She was poor.

B. In everyone else’s eyes, she didn’t have much to give. In fact, if people had known what she had, they probably would have said, “Just keep it. You need it more than the Temple does.”

C. Giving is giving - period. Paying people for work they do for you is not giving. Putting something into someone’s hands with conditions attached is not giving. Loaning to someone is not giving.

Giving is completely relinquishing control of something of yours into the control of another person to do with as he or she pleases.

D. I love it! Jesus is standing by the offering plate watching what and how people give.

And no doubt there were big givers. Tradition says many of the religious leaders gave with big fanfare and piety.

“Watch me and see how much I give.”

And in the middle of that, this little widow walks up quietly and assumedly and drops in a couple of pennies. Jesus nudges His disciples and says, “You see that poor widow, she gave more than anyone else – in fact, more than all the others put together.”

E. Jesus understood that true wealth is not measured by what people have but by what they give in proportion to what they have.

F. I know many times I’ve been in church and special meetings when an appeal was made and I wanted to give a large amount but didn’t have it. I wanted to make a big donation because my heart was moved by the need.

I know it happens here. There are those who want to respond to the opportunities we have here to give. Often you feel like you can’t and the little you could give wouldn’t matter.

1. You cannot give what you do not have.
2. Give something!

a. Make a way to always bring your tithe and an offering to the Lord.
b. Your commitment to that opens the door for God to bless.
c. Your commitment to tithe and offerings puts you in partnership with impacting the world.
d. When you tithe, you not only insure we Train our Children, Restore Our Families, and Impact our Community, but we are touching the world.
e. Every month, 5% of our tithe goes to World Evangelization. We partner with thousands of other churches to do ministry, in over 180 countries around the world!
f. You tithe to Wincog and you are feeding the hungry, caring for orphans and widows, training workers, providing Bibles, sponsoring missionaries in all the continents of this earth.
g. You are making a difference around the world when you give in the offerings here.

3. Give something.

a. Make it a spiritual discipline to give something.
b. God knows your heart and your position to give.
c. Winston Churchill said:

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”

1. It is so true, isn’t it?

a. It is why most of us enjoy giving gifts at Christmas more than we do receiving them.
b. The problem is this culture of ours has so influenced our thinking that we have totally missed the beautiful and simple principles of God’s Word.

2. “It is more blessed to give than it is to receive.”
3. “Give and it shall be given.”
4. “Purpose in your heart what you bring to the Lord and then offer it cheerfully.”
5. “Silver and gold I don’t have but what I do have I give.”
6. “Offer a cold drink to a thirsty soul and you’ll get the reward of a prophet.”
7. Realize that the legacy you build will not be based on what you accumulate for yourself. Rather, you will be remembered for what you have given.

a. This “poor widow” gave 2 cents. All she had.
b. She had lost her husband to death.
c. The Bible speaks not to her family.
d. She obviously is alone.
e. She is poor. She is seen as poor probably because of how she appeared – her tattered clothing, her lack of visual appeal.

4. But, think of this!

a. 2,000 years later I’m standing in a church in a farming field speaking to people here and via livestream around the world – talking about what this little poor widow gave.
b. It’d make more sense if she’d given millions and some great cathedral was built and still standing because of her giving.
c. But no. I’m speaking about 2 cents. You know why? Because Jesus made a big deal out of no deal!
d. And when Jesus gets involved with our not so big deals, but it is the only deal we’ve got, it becomes a gi-normous deal!


Lesson 2: You give it and just watch God do His work!

A. Is there anyone here who thinks for a moment that this little woman:

1. Gave all she had.

2. Jesus – the Son of God – watched her.

3. She went in to worship…

Does anyone think for a moment that she then went home and starved to death and died in object poverty?

B. I don’t know what happened to her. I don’t know how her life played out. The Bible doesn’t trace her steps.

But I promise you – I guarantee you – you can take it to the bank – she didn’t do without.

There is no way God stood there and saw her heart to give and ignored her.

C. And I promise you – I guarantee you – you can take it to the bank – you won’t do without either.

There is no way God will stand here and see your heart to give and ignore you!

D. “But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches – not ours, His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

E. I wish there was some way we could know how much has been given over 2,000 years that was directly inspired by the heart of this poor widow. All because she gave her 2 cents worth!


Here’s my rant today.

1. I’m so angry at the devil and really frustrated at us that through the years we’ve allowed him to take this beautiful gift of radical generosity and made it a contentious issue among so many believers.

2. Churches have been split – people have been hurt – the work of God greatly hindered because something so beautiful has become perverted.

3. Don’t let it happen to you. Don’t let it happen to us. Let us continue and encourage all to be radical in our giving. Let’s embrace the simple truths of God’s Word and change our world.




Worship Set



Nothing Is Impossible 

- Jonathan Hunt

Chorus 1

Through You I can do anything
I can do all things'
Cause it's You who gives me strength
Nothing is impossible
Through You blind eyes are open
Strongholds are broken
I am living by faith
Nothing is impossible

Verse 1

I'm not gonna live by what I see
I'm not gonna live by what I feel

Misc 1 (Pre-Chorus)

Deep down I know that You're here with me
And I know that You can do anything

Misc 2 (Bridge)

I believe I believe
I believe I believe in You
(REPEAT)


No Longer Slaves 

- Jonathan David Helser and Melissa Helser

Verse 1

You unravel me with a melody
You surround me with a song
Of deliverance from my enemies
Till all my fears are gone

Chorus 1

I'm no longer a slave to fear
I am a child of God
I'm no longer a slave to fear
I am a child of God

Verse 2

From my Mother's womb
You have chosen me
Love has called my name
I've been born again into Your family
Your blood flows through my veins

Misc 1 (Bridge)

You split the sea so I could walk right through it
My fears were drowned in perfect love
You rescued me so I could stand and sing
I am a child of God


Glorious!

- Phil Barfoot and Rebecca J. Peck Arranged by Cliff Duren

Chorus 1

Glorious, marvelous, righteous and victorious
You alone are the King who reigns on high
We will raise grateful praise
For Your love will never change
Mighty God, Your Holy name is glorious

Verse 1

Majesty and glory are in your sanctuaryLord,
You are exalted far above the earth
We proclaim your spendor, provision, and Your power
Telling all the world about Your wondrous works

Chorus 2

Glorious, marvelous, righteous and victorious
You alone are the King who reigns on high
We will raise grateful praise
For Your love will never change
Mighty God, Your Holy name is glorious

Verse 2

We will give You all the honor
Savior and Strong Tower
Everlasting Father,
You are the Prince of peace
Alpha and Omega,
You're the fountain of salvation
Worthy of our worship for eternity

Chorus 3

Glorious, marvelous, righteous and victorious
You alone are the King who reigns on high
We will raise grateful praise
For Your love will never change
Mighty God, Your Holy name is glorious

Misc (Bridge)

All creation will arise to testify
Lifting up our song of praise
We magnify and glorify

Chorus 4

Glorious, marvelous, righteous and victorious
You alone are the King who reigns on high
We will raise grateful praise
For Your love will never change
Mighty God, Your Holy name is glorious

Misc (Tag)

Glory to Your name
Glory to Your name
Your name is glorious
Glorious
Your name is glorious
Glorious


Alabaster Jar

- Walker Beach and Zach Neese

Verse 1

This alabaster jar is all I have of worth
I break it at Your feet Lord
It's less than You deserve
You're far more beautiful
More precious than the oil
The sum of my desires
And the fullness of my joy
Like You spilled Your blood I spill my heart
As an off'ring to my King

Chorus 1

Here I am take me as an offering
Here I am giving ev'ry heartbeat for Your glory
Take me

Verse 2

This time that I have left is all I have of worth
I lay it at Your feet Lord
It's less than You deserve
And though I've little strength
And though my days are few
You gave Your life for me
So I will live my life for You
Like You spilled Your blood I spill my heart
As an off'ring to my King

Misc 1 (Bridge)

(You are) Worthy worthy
You are worthy
Worthy is the Lord
(REPEAT 8X)

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