August H. Francke, the well-known German preacher of the 17th century, founded an orphanage to take care of the homeless children who roamed the streets of Halle. One day when he desperately needed funds to carry on his work, a destitute Christian widow came to his door begging for one gold ducat. Because of his financial situation, he politely but regretfully refused. Disheartened, the woman sat down and began to weep. Moved by her tears, Francke asked her to wait while he went to his room to pray about the matter. Seeking God's guidance, he felt that the Holy Spirit wanted him to grant the request. Trusting the Lord to meet his own pressing needs, he gave her the money.

Two mornings later he received a warm letter of thanks from the widow saying that because of his generosity she had asked the Lord to shower the orphanage with gifts. That same day he received 12 ducats from a rich lady and two from a friend in Sweden. He thought he had been amply rewarded, but shortly afterward he was informed that Prince Lodewyk Van Wurtenburg had died, and in his will had directed that 500 gold pieces be given to the orphanage! Francke wept in gratitude. In sacrificially providing for that needy saint, he had not been impoverished but enriched.

We should always give with pure motives, "hoping for nothing again" (Luke 6:35); yet God does promise, "He that giveth unto the poor shall not lack!"