Today, you are generous.
I don’t want to give you much in the mechanics of how to accomplish this goal, but rather, we will focus on the why.
Generosity is counter-cultural. What motivates generosity in the world? Well, there are a couple of reasons why anyone would be motivated to generosity. Off the top of my head, I could name:
- Sadness: A commercial with Sarah McLachlan’s music playing in the background while images of abandoned dogs pan across the screen in slow motion comes to mind… Some people confuse this with compassion, but if we are really honest, we ultimately help to make us feel better.
- Guilt: Pressure from family or friends and a sad story can motivate the cracking open of a wallet given enough time.
- Karma: The false belief that putting good out into the Universe will manipulate fate to send good things back to you.
So, what does true generosity look like? Well, on the outside it might look similar to the actions that someone would make under the motivations mentioned above. However, the heart of a truly generous person is different.
In order to have a generous heart, we need to be connected to the most generous being in existence, God himself. The Holy Spirit is vital if you want to grow in generosity. Only through His power can we be generous with our time, our money, our emotions, and our lives.
That is the goal of this day. To practice dependence on the Holy Spirit to give you a heart of generosity. If you can get this concept into your heart, the practical applications will flow out of you naturally.
The point is not to have you spend a lot of money either. If that is what the Holy Spirit is calling you to do, you should obey Him, but that is not the only way that He will work in generosity. He may have you be generous with your time. For me, that means being willing to listen to long, complicated stories that my son imagines. It is hard for me to be generous with my time listening to my son because a story might be 30 seconds long or 30 minutes.
Another way I can be generous is linked to my stage of life. I can teach my children about generosity by picking up sticks and raking leaves for a neighbor. I can save up extra cash with my wife and bless a waitress with a ridiculously large tip. A few months of saving our pocket change can yield $50 to $100.
I want you to be creative. I want you to pray and ask how God is motivating generosity in you today, and I want you to take action. I believe that you will find this day to be fulfilling and memorable. The good news is, you can choose to be generous again tomorrow.