Generosity.  Giving.  Being generous to others.  Giving to God.  It’s not always an easy task in our selfish, get-all-we-can-for-ourselves society.  Even though we know it’s the right thing to do and that we feel pretty good when we give,  we still hesitate to do it sometimes.  A variety of reasons keep us from being as generous as God would have us to be.  Sometimes it’s because we just have very little to give, sometimes it’s a lack of faith, sometimes it’s just plain selfishness.  Whatever the reason, we must strive to overcome it and become generous, giving people.

Generous to God by Giving to the Church.  As a pastor, I preach it and I live it.  It’s actually a great relief to tithe the first 10% of our income to God through the church.  Tithing (giving 10%) is a biblical principle.  I believe holding back on this is a spiritual issue that so many believers struggle with.  I do not want to be guilty of robbing God as it says in Malachi 3.  I literally believe that if I make $1,000/week, I should give God $100.  Why I am doing the math here?  I hear people talk about giving to the church…and when you give $200/year but earn $100,000…is that really generous giving?  It’s not about the church needing money (although it does), but it’s about God having control of this area of our lives.

Jesus said…“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:21)

Generous to Others.  I have been on the giving and the receiving end of acts of generosity.  It’s an amazing feeling on both ends.  It’s humbling to see God using other people to bless you.  It’s exhilerating to experience God using you to bless others.  I remember a period when my wife was on bedrest with our 3rd child.  She had to quit her job.  Then my car got vandalized.  It seemed like things were just tanking financially.  But God provided through people.  The church families began providing meals for us.  I received an anonymous envelope will several hundreds of dollars for my car repair.  God provided through the generosity of others.  And we have been able to be on the other side of that as well…being able to give to those in need in ways we never thought possible.

Let’s be honest…we all need to grow in this area.  We all struggle with materialism on some level.  Our culture is hounding us to get more and hoard more for ourselves.  It goes against the grain to give.  Being generous to God by tithing seems ridiculous to some and giving beyond the tithe can seem like you’ve lost your mind.  But I must ask myself these questions:

  • Am I going to invest in things that are temporary or in things that are eternal? 
  • Where is my treasure going to be?