God continues to generously pour out understanding about the essentiality of generosity, but we have to stop sometime. Perhaps this isn’t my final post on the topic, but it’s still a conclusion.
We began the year by looking at God’s heart, and we’ll conclude it by considering our own hearts.
Everything I have comes from Him
We say it, but we don’t live it. We live as if we are supplying our own needs, gathering for our own futures, enjoying the fruits of our own labors. But none of that is possible without His provision.
King David prayed,
But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand. –1 Chronicles 29:14
“Give back to him”
is a broad term.
He gives to us so that we can give back to Him, and “give back to him” is a broad term. Jesus told us that whatever we give in His Name is actually given to Him (Matthew 10:40-42).
When I am selfish, when I grab up His money, time, or resources, I am hoarding what belongs to Him and needs to return to Him. If you have time, read the beginning of David’s prayer (1 Chronicles 29:10-13) to get your heart right on this point. I want to start reading it at the beginning of every day.
Generosity evidences a clean heart
The Old Testament calls it righteousness.
The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous give generously. –Psalm 37:21
Jesus used simpler words. He talked about cleanliness.
But now as for what is inside you—be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you. –Luke 11:41
We have to remember, though, this heart of generosity is not on display for the world. Acts of generosity done in order to be seen will still benefit others, but they lose their God-glorifying nature.
When you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. –Matthew 6:3
All true generosity
All true generosity glorifies God. We can gauge the authentic generosity of our hearts (when we don’t care about being recognized or honors) as a means of self-examination, to know how fully we are committed to Him and His glory.
We have so we can give
We don’t need to worry about our own needs being neglected because of our generosity. The Old Testament promises God will reimburse us.
Good will come to those who are generous and led freely, who conduct their affairs with justice. –Psalm 112:5
People rightly say, “You can’t out-give God.” (See also Proverbs 11:25 and 22:9). The New Testament, however, turns generosity inside-out. Instead of being blessed because we gave, the New Testament perspective says we are already blessed so we can give.
You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. –2 Corinthians 9:11
Generosity will result in thanksgiving…
Let’s thank God that
He has given us these
things to use generously.
Look at the house you have right now. Look at the car you drive. Look at the food in your pantry. Together, let’s thank God that He has given us these things to use generously, for His glory.
How can we use our blessings for His glory? That’s where generosity takes us.
God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. –2 Corinthians 9:8
All things…all times…all that you need…every good work…
I still have so much selfishness I need to eradicate, but I will continue to tell my heart to open up for His glory.
How has your heart grown in generosity this year? Tell us a story—not to steal God’s glory but to celebrate His growth in you. The comments are open!