Gray and his friends started checking out after eating a hearty evening meal. When Gray scanned his card, his cash card was rejected, not once, but repeatedly. There had to be a mistake, Gray thought. After all, his parents had put cash on his card for the whole semester. Clearly embarrassed, Gray asked the cashier to run the card one more time. Annoyed that he was holding up the line, the cashier sarcastically said, “If you don’t have it, you can’t spend it.”
That’s the way it is. When your resources are spent, you don’t have it to give.
Likewise, we can’t help others if we’re “spiritually broke.” One time, the disciples prayed for a child to be released from an evil spirit. When the disciples failed, they turned to Jesus. The disciples didn’t understand why they couldn’t cast out the spirit when Jesus did. Jesus responded that these come out “only by prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29)
If we don’t have it, we can’t give it, either. Just like the example above, our promises to pray for others are empty if we haven’t already spent time with Him in prayer. Without being filled up, we’re not ready to pour into others. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to “pray without ceasing.” Let’s pray today and every day so when it’s time to give it away, we’ve got it to give to others.