For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have. ~2 Cor. 8:12
Generosity. Where does it begin? For me, it begins and ends with Christ. I know that He doesn't need (before or now) anything I have to offer Him. Whether it be my time, talent, or treasure. I should consider it a privilege and pleasure to have the opportunity to be able to contribute to the “work” He has set out for us to complete. The job we’ve been allowed to accept is to take care of His flock (our brothers and sisters that are along with us on this journey).
Believe it or not, there is a point where one can give too much? That would seem like a strange thing to say in comparison to the sacrifices of Christ, but the concept has gnawed its way into many human relationships. In 2 Corinthians, we were reminded that we need to prepare ourselves for the “service” of giving. Who would think that giving would take preparation? But when we don’t take the time to make sure that our gifts and sacrifices are done decently and in order, we risk the chance that they become something we do just because we feel compelled to do it.
If a person lives long enough, sooner or later they’ll hopefully come to realize that they can’t outgive God. It starts, however, with learning what He has gifted you with. All of us were given a gift that He wants us to share. We may spend most of our life trying to just figure out what that is. It will be shaped by both our hard-fought trials (and, some would call them, setbacks) and victories. We must be on the lookout for when and where He is allowing us to further the development of those gifts; so that when He calls on us to use and share them, we are ready. It doesn’t always mean that you’ll have to do it on your own.
I’m always amazed at how God sends the complementary helper for a gift I’m trying to share who subsequently multiplies it beyond anything I could have imagined.
I’m slowly learning to ask Him what I’m supposed to learn from my experiences; so that I’ll be prepared to share them when He calls.
I strongly believe that I should give with an open hand and heart. Not because I am looking for something in return for what I offer to Him; but so that He can put a new tool in it to use for the next task He has for me.
A Prayer for Us All
God, Please grant us the gift of Giving;
Let us strive to make giving to your work our daily goal.
Let us find, through every door that you open for us, an opportunity to live life generously.
When we stumble, let the world be amazed at how we see it as an opportunity to give You Praise.
Daily, remind us that you are the Gift giver, and we are not in competition with you; but in your training class.
Open our hearts to know that as we freely give out of the sacrifice of Time, Talent, and Treasure that you will press those gifts down, shake them together and their fruitfulness will be running over.
And we ask this in the precious name of Jesus,