One of many lessons that we learn as children is the concept of what it means to share our possessions. This may seem like a simple concept, but in our hearts we tend to have the, this is “mine” attitude, unwilling to share what belongs to us. What we must realize is that nothing really belongs to us, it all belongs to God. He just allows us to borrow and use His possessions. With that in mind, we need to learn what He wants us to do with His belongings. That answer is simple yet difficult to do. He asks us to be generous givers.
What does it really mean to be generous? The dictionary defines generosity as readiness or liberality in giving, bountiful, a degree of character. This definition states that we need to be prepared and willing to give what we have away. You may ask yourself the question of “what do I have to give or I don’t have much as it is”. The answer is in the scriptures.
“And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own” 2 Corinthians 8:1-3
Even though these people had little, they still had a heart of generosity, a willingness to give even more than what they were able to. God’s grace gave them joyful hearts to give. Generosity is not what we are able to give; it is that we are willing to give. The lesson here is to be willing to share the bountiful blessing bestowed on us by God to others.
Another part of the definition of generosity is liberality, to bestow favors. Liberality is a quality of the heart and mind, nobleness of the soul, selflessness. Giving generously builds character. Character is a quality of honesty and integrity. This kind of reputation is something that any one should strive to follow, regardless of your faith. By giving with a willing heart, you are not just blessing others but you are also pleasing God.
“Good will come to those who are generous and lend freely, who conduct their affairs with justice. Surely the righteous will never be shaken; they will be remembered forever. They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor, their righteousness endures forever; their horn will be lifted high in honor." Psalm 112:5-6, 9
God blesses a generous heart. When we chose to surrender our lives to Him, He helps us to have a heart willing to give to others. Being a joyful giver is contagious and when we are generous, love and joy stirs in the hearts of those around us. What does generosity look like in your life?