The subject of giving our money can be a touchy one. We don't like it when other people talk to us about our money - especially if we didn't ask them first. I don't like it, so I've usually avoided the topic on my blog. But for the last week or so, I haven't been able to shake this post. It just keeps coming when I sit down to write.
In 2 Corinthians 8 & 9, Paul talks about giving money. He was writing to the church in Corinth about a collection for the poor of the church of Jerusalem specifically. Paul commends the church for their willingness to give out of what they had to help others - even when they didn't have a lot themselves.
Now that we have the context for this writing, there are a couple of verses specifically speaking to generosity that have stuck with me.
"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." (2 Corinthians 9:6-7)
Paul was reminding his readers of the importance of generosity in their giving. He wasn't telling them there was a certain amount they had to give, but was encouraging them to be generous.
Generosity was a value Paul was emphasizing to his readers. He reminded them of a very simple truth about the results of giving generously or giving sparingly. Generous giving results in generosity from God in our own lives. This generosity from God is not promised to be in terms of earthly wealth - Paul is speaking of a spiritual reward here. But when we choose to be generous with what we have on earth, God is generous with us.
These two chapters in 2 Corinthians are not the only place where Scripture talks about giving to God for use in furthering His kingdom. But they are the two where I've been spending my time recently. And they have challenged me in the area of generosity in my life.
Am I being generous with what God has given me?
Are you being generous with what God has given you?