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February 11, 2014

Caution: Handle With Gratitude

By Brittany Tedesco

Where does our help come from?

From this shiny golden calf. After all, it delivered us out of the land of Egypt…said the Israelites to one another while Moses was away on a mountain having a conversation with God.

Say what?

I thought God delivered them out of Egypt.

He did.

Did they just forget? Maybe. More likely, they just chose to believe a lie.

People are peculiar creatures. We can lie to ourselves—if we’re not careful. We can believe that we’re the ones in control, that we create our own success.

Instead of worshipping God, the Israelites chose to worship the image of a calf. A calf doesn’t talk back. Just a quietly approving beast of burden, a calf is undemanding, predictable, controllable. Not like God.

The calf was also made of gold.

People are peculiar creatures. Money can do weird things to us—if we’re not paying attention.

How that calf must’ve glimmered in the moonlight…beckoning the Israelites to enter into its false sense of security.

People are people—we haven’t changed all that much from ancient days. We’re still prone to forget, still prone to put our trust is something other than almighty God.

I’m convinced the antidote to this, our human condition, is gratitude. Gratitude forces us to remember the Source of our help. It causes us to acknowledge the Giver.

Christian Aid recently received a large gift—well, large for us. Compared to some ministries, we’re still relatively small. We haven’t spent much on PR or advertising. Some people call us “the best kept secret.”

But little by little, as God leads, we’re taking steps to make known the purpose for our existence, which is to financially assist our native brethren overseas.

All of us were encouraged by the news of this gift, shared in our weekly staff meeting—at least I know I was. But I think what encouraged me the most was the time of prayer initiated by our president, Cynthia Finley, immediately following the news.

We followed her lead to bow our heads and lift up praise to God. We asked for His wisdom in how to steward the gift for His glory and honor.

A gift like this should be handled delicately: with gratitude.

What if the Israelites had thanked God for freeing them from slavery? They might not have put their trust in a golden calf.

What if we keep thanking God for His provision for Christian Aid Mission?

We won’t put our trust in big checks.

“Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.” (Psalm 20:7)

Where does our help come from?

It comes from the Lord, maker of heaven and earth.

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