“see that you also excel in this grace of giving” 2 Corinthians 8:7
I’m sold on generosity as a way of life. Few things have opened my eyes and heart to God’s work like giving and seeing others give generously. This statement is so true: “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” I wish I could compel you to generosity as well. OK, I guess I’ll ty:
Giving and Generosity. Why?
1. Because God says to. “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse…” Malachi 3:10. Proverbs 3:9-10, 1 Corinthians 15:2, 2 Corinthians 9:7. Basic Christianity = Listen to God + Do what He says.
2. Because it opens doors for others. “into the storehouse” Malachi 3:10. The Old Testament storehouse had three functions: to take care of the temple and it’s servants, to take care of the poor and needy, and to spread the glory of God to the unbelieving gentile world. Generosity then and now served to open doors for others to be cared for and experience God’s goodness.
3. Because it opens “windows” for us. “…see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need” Malachi 3:10. God gives TO us, so that he can give THROUGH us. And He promises to respond when we participate with Him in His mission to the world.
4. Because it produces glory for God. “your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God” 2 Corinthians 9:11. The chief end of man is to glorify God. If that’s your motive then giving will be a way of life. Recently, someone our church helped penned this in a note: “God promised to take care of us, and thank God He always keeps His promises!” Through our generosity, not our hesitation and excuses, another person is giving glory to God. That should be a continuous cycle among His generous people.
5. Because it’s a statement of faith in God to provide. “test me in this” Malachi 3:8. God is able to provide for His peeps. Many times we play it safe in the area of giving, because we believe not in God’s ability, but in our limited capacity to provide for ourselves. So, we and others never get to experience God’s ability.
6. Because God’s a giver and I want to be just like Him. “For God so loved the world that He GAVE…” John 3:16. And as we become more like Him, we will want to give that His glory will be known on the earth.
How can I be obedient to God, open doors of blessing to others, guarantee heaven’s blessings on my household, produce more praise and glory for God in the world, show God and others that I’m a believer, and become more like Christ?
It’s simple: began giving regularly, consistently (2 Corinthians 16:1-2), sacrificially (2 Corinthians 8:9), and cheerfully (2 Corinthians 9:7) toward God’s mission. For my family, that comes in the form of giving monthly to my church (the modern day storehouse), monthly support of missionaries serving in unreached areas of the world, monthly support of orphan causes, and budgeted amounts for spontaneous generosity when God speaks. It’s not always been easy, but I’ve never regretted following God’s path of generosity.
How do I start?
- Pick a % of your income that you can give regular/consistently, that’s sacrificial (for some 10% is not sacrificial), and begin giving it cheerfully to your church.
- Ask God to open your eyes to needs around you and listen. When God shows you a need don’t just hope SOMEBODY ELSE will help. Respond with generosity and watch God work in and through you.
- Become a better manager in every area of your finances. Generosity takes intentionality. What are you spending money on that can be considered waste? Ask God to show you how you can be a better manager of His provision.