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Grace and Generosity

January 12th, 2018

Release Is the key to increase.

“You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion.” 2 Corinthians 9:11 NIV.

My thoughts and comments today are about, “Grace and Generosity.”

Inherently, people would like to be generous, but giving just does not come easily for us. The tiniest infant can grip something tightly in the smallest of hands. And that natural tendency never seems to be lost. It seems natural to hold tightly rather than to release. We spend our lifetimes gathering, hoarding, and storing. And the more a person has, the greater their reluctance to give anything away. Possessions encourage possessing.

In contrast, the Bible is clear that generosity is the path to abundance and blessing. Solomon observed, “One person gives freely, yet gains more; another withholds what is right, only to become poor. A generous person will be enriched and the one who gives water will receive water.” Proverbs 11.24-25.  Release is the key to increase. Growing up, I often heard my Dad say, “You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.” I have found that to be true. 

The Apostle Paul was astounded at the grace and generosity from God, “To me, the very least of all saints, this grace was given, to preach the unfathomable riches of Christ.” Ephesians 3:8 NAS. From the grace given you, the even greater grace of giving flows from a heart already overflowing. Paul marveled at, “the unfathomable riches of Christ!” Jesus taught,“Give and it will be given to you; a good measure – pressed down, shaken together and running over – will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6.38 NIV. You have to firmly believe that when you give what you should give, it is loaned to the Lord Who will repay, not lost.

The first step in the grace of giving is to realize that everything belongs to God, and everything you have comes from Him. “Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 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 9:10-11 NIV. Your God provides, multiplies, increases, and enriches when you choose to live generously.

God established a principle of sowing and reaping. The principle is really simple. First of all, you reap what you sow. Also, you reap more than you sow. And importantly, you reap nothing if you sow nothing. “Remember this: the person who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the person who sows generously will also reap generously. Each person should give as he has determined in his heart – not with regret or from necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 NKJV. My grandfather, Charles McGinness, often said to his congregation, “Don’t give until it hurts. Give until it stops hurting.” Grandad was right. That’s when you experience the grace of giving.

Giving isn’t really about money. Giving is about heart, about love, and about God and others. Where giving is restricted, love is lacking. Who has not seen a young child bring a pretty (or sometimes not so pretty) wild flower to their Mom saying, “I love you Mommy?” Their love has to find some way of expression, just like God’s love.

When you give graciously and generously, you are most like your Heavenly Father. Jesus said, “It is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom.” Luke 12:32 NKJV. Who could forget the most familiar verse of all, “For God so loved the world that He gave His own Son that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 NKJV. Giving is a family trait in our Father’s house. A New Year is a good time to practice the grace of living and giving generously.

My prayer for you today is to give with generosity according to the grace given you.

Christian Communications 2017-1149

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