2 Corinthians 12:11-13
2Co 12:11 I have been stupid. You forced me, because I ought to have been recommended by you. Because I was not at all inferior to these super-missionaries, even though I am nothing.
2Co 12:12 The signs proving me to be a missionary were performed among you with every instance of perseverance, with signs and wonders and powerful works.
2Co 12:13 Because in what way were you less favorably treated than the rest of the churches, except that I myself did not burden you? Forgive me this wrong!
missions report card
Paul is looking at his missions report card. He cannot understand how he is now getting such low marks by the very people he and his team had won to Christ, and discipled in Christ. The team had proven themselves genuine by their undergoing numerous difficulties, yet persevering through them to minister to the Corinthians. There had been signs, wonders, and displays of God’s power.
The only difference that he can see is that Paul had determined not to ask the Corinthians for their financial support. He did not want to burden them financially until they were better established. But now that they are well established as churches, they seem reluctant to support the very team who brought them the gospel.
Numerous mission fields get stuck in a never-ending cycle of dependence because the people of God are taught that someone else is responsible for funding their work. It breeds hypocrisy and jealousy and corruption.
LORD, forgive us for failing to teach the whole gospel to those we reach. Show us how to build churches and organizations who are good stewards of the resources you provide them.