Paul has a paternal relationship with the Corinthians–he is dad and they are his children, and parents provide for the kids, not the other way around, “for children are not obligated to save up for their parents, but parents for their children” (2Corinthians 12:14). It is the mark of a false leader that they would seek to gain from their ministry. To the contrary, Paul “will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls” (2Corinthians 12:15).
Mom came down to breakfast one morning and found a bill from her son beside her breakfast plate: Mowing the lawn – $6.00; Drying the dishes – $1.00; Raking leaves – $6.00; Cleaning garage – $7.00; Total owed – $20.00.
That afternoon, her son returned from school, and found next to a plate of cookies, a note that read: Washing clothes – nothing; Vacuuming room – nothing; Cooking meals – nothing; Driving everywhere – nothing; Baking cookies – nothing. Love, Mom.
That is the attitude of Paul, as it is the attitude of any leader committed to serve like Christ. “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2Corinthians 12:9-10).
I thank You, God, for Your grace, for the righteousness that comes from Your Son, for the power that comes through Your Spirit. You created everything. Me included. I am Your workmanship.
Sometimes I get the idea that I have something to offer You. Something You need. I should remember, and I shall remember, that everything I am is because of You. Everything I do, may it give You pleasure and bring You glory. And everything You have given me, may I share it freely, because it cost me nothing and You everything.