Faith & Insight: ROI God sees
Happy New Year. In the title are very familiar letters in the investment world. Now before you shut down and stop reading because a pastor is going to be talking about investments, take a moment and hear me out.
Not all sermons about sowing and reaping and reciprocity are about tithing. As a matter of fact, when we learn and understand the laws of sowing and reaping, tithing becomes a lifestyle, not just with finances.
ROI stands for Return on Investment. What does that have to do with God sees? Well, interestingly enough it is also one of the many names of God. El ROI means the God who sees (Genesis 16:13). And the God who sees is the God who knows. He knows before we ask, he knows before we need. And as we know through fulfilled prophecy, he is fully acquainted with everything about us.
Looking forward to 2015 and celebrating a happy New Year, a question could be asked, how do we ensure a happy New Year?
We can begin by wrapping our hearts and our heads around simple laws of sowing and reaping. Think about what, when, where, why, and how we sow or invest or give, and that begins to define the results in the reaping.
Part of our happy, merry, joyful new year is based on what we sowed in the previous one. And how we will tend to that ground in the year that is before us. When you plant love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self control and you nurture, tend, and nurture that ground, you will reap the benefits of each of those seeds planted.
El Roi, “the God who sees,” will also be the God who brings forth the return on investment, the physical ROI. Here are a few laws to understand —
Sowing is a choice. The farmer chooses what he sows. He is intentional on what he sows. And with expectation, he will reap from the efforts. The farmer also is careful when he sows because he knows the nature of the crop that he desires to produce. He chooses the right land, uses the right equipment and understands the season, the weather, the water, to ensure the intended and best results. He is not careless. If he were, he would stand to lose everything. One of the simplest of all laws has obviously been stated, what you sow is what you reap.
The wonderful thing about sowing, reciprocity, investing, is that in most cases you reap far more than what you have sown. Think of a grain of corn and how many kernels it yields back on one ear. Now translate that into an act of kindness and what would be reaped could be a lifetime of friendship, it could be somebody making a decision to better their life which has many kernels of blessing for everyone in their life ahead of them. This is a message that each one of us should really take to heart as we reflect on a year past and make decisions on the year present, knowing full well El Roi, God sees.
One last law that I would like to remind us of is the times in which we sow, different seasons call for different preparations. Sowing and planting are not just a one-time-a-year event. Consider the winter wheat of Kansas which is sown in September — times and seasons of sowing are important. Investing is a continuous thing. I pray that there is great hope in all of our futures, simply knowing how planting works. Knowing that God is not hidden from us. He has revealed these things to us. These physical things are seen in our nature and physics. The emotional aspect of sowing is seen in our relationship with others as we live out God’s word.
The question that remains is, are we going to be in a blind pursuit of our own desires, or are we going to invest into the Kingdom of God and to each other in our community around us? Knowing with great expectation of a wonderful reaping of eternal life. The choice is ours.
I want each of us to have God’s blessing of harvest. It’s time to begin this year planting, building, investing into a legacy of righteousness that will impact generations to come. May the God of all peace bless and keep you may his face shine upon you and his countenance be lifted up upon you in this new year and the ones to come.
Pat Propster is the pastor of Calvary Chapel of Carson City.