Framework for generosity
For reading & meditation: Proverbs 11:1-10
"The Lord abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight." (v.1)
How do we go about establishing a framework for generosity? First - decide that nothing you possess is your own but that everything you have belongs to God. This puts God in His place and you in yours. You are now ready to manage His possessions, not as you like but as He likes. This is real freedom. It gives you a sense of accountability to another - God. You get your life orders not from a whim, a notion, self-impulse or whatever takes your fancy, but from the One who saved you and redeemed you. Second - go over your life and see what belongs to your needs and what merely belongs to your wants. Your needs are important - God has promised to supply them - but your wants? Ah, that is another thing. You need as much as will make you fit - spiritually, physically and mentally - for the purposes of God while you are here on the earth. Beyond that, what you have belongs to the needs of others. How do you decide what belongs to your needs? No one can decide it for you - though they can make suggestions - for you are accountable to God. Go over your life item by item and ask Him for directions. Your family should figure prominently in your concerns, but you must check everything with the Lord. Third - fix it as an axiom in your mind that you will be generous to people, not for the good feelings that generosity brings, but because you are determined to bless them in some way. You must never be generous in order to get a blessing - you must be generous to be a blessing.
Father, I am thankful that the basis of my life is fixed in You and from that I am able to build a framework for generosity. From now on help me to give with all the stops out. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.
For further study:
1. What was the principle in the early Church?
2. What words of Jesus did Paul recall?