On Mount Sinai, the Lord directed Moses to request an offering from the people. He made it clear that He cared about not only what they gave, but also how they gave:
Speak unto the children of Israel, that they bring me an offering: of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart ye shall take my offering.Exodus 25:2
The people responded to this invitation:
They came, every one whose heart stirred him up, and every one whom his spirit made willing, and they brought the Lord’s offering to the work of the tabernacle of the congregation, and for all his service, and for the holy garments.
And they came, both men and women, as many as were willing hearted…Exodus 35:21-22
These people donated expensive items (which they had only recently acquired from their Egyptian masters). They also donated their time and energy to help build the tabernacle. (See Exodus 35:22-35.)
Our attitude matters as we give and serve. The apostle Paul said that we should give “not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). And Mormon taught that, if a person gives a gift grudgingly, “it is counted unto him [or her] the same as if he [or she] had retained the gift” (Moroni 7:8). In other words, you can lose all of the benefits of your generosity by having a bad attitude.
In September of 1831, the Lord gave the following counsel to a group of church members preparing to relocate from the city Kirtland, Ohio to the frontier in Missouri:
Behold, the Lord requireth the heart and a willing mind; and the willing and obedient shall eat the good of the land of Zion in these last days.Doctrine and Covenants 64:34
Today, I will strive to be “willing hearted.” I will remember that my attitude about my gifts and service can determine how beneficial and uplifting they are.
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