Archive for January 22nd, 2011

Generosity of Spirit

Generosity of spirit means that an individual chooses to give of his own free will. Generosity of spirit encompasses more than just giving money. It includes giving time, thoughts, words and ideas. Generosity of spirit generates change because it promotes action. True generosity of spirit requires taking action to make a difference. It is a tool to create a better world.

 “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45, NASB95) This generosity of spirit, this willingness to serve others I believe does not come naturally. I believe it is something that we have to develop. Our problem is that we don’t want to serve others in a way that requires personal sacrifice. Generosity of spirit needs to be something that is not consciously thought about. It needs to be way of life and it needs to be authentic. I am persuaded that the foundation to see change in people is not sound theology; it is this generosity of spirit.

Your goal is that through the things you say, the way you say them, and the attitudes you express, God will change the heart of this person. God is connecting you with people so that he might complete his work in their lives. You are called to be more than a husband, wife, parent, counselor, neighbor, or friend. You are called to have this “Generosity of Spirit.” People are watching you to see if you are for real and to see if God is for real. In the book Re-Churching the Unchurched, the research found that only 2 percent of those who don’t attend church do so because they don’t believe in God. The other 98 percent stay away because they, for a variety of reasons, don’t like what they see when they look at the church. Our generosity of spirit toward people in need can go a long way toward demonstrating to the skeptics what authentic Christianity looks like, whether its seen up-close or from a distance.

While he was on earth, Jesus could have gone back to heaven before the cross. But if he had, he would have taken no one with him. To take others with him, he had to face the cross. Without his death there would be no fruit. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” (John 12:24, NASB95) Jesus possessed this generosity of spirit, a heart for people, and he wants us to have that same heart for others. The entire world needs to hear the kind of love Christ has, and he intends to communicate this love to the world through our lives. That’s why we need to develop a heart for people.

In your life, do people matter? Do you have this generosity of spirit? Have you developed a necessity to reach others for Christ?

Meditate on these words from Isaiah 32:2: Each will be like a refuge from the wind And a shelter from the storm, Like streams of water in a dry country, Like the shade of a huge rock in a parched land.”  Pray that God would make you like a refuge from the storm for other people, someone who can be to them like a cool shade from the desert heat of life, someone they are refreshed by and enjoy being with. Pray that you will have this generosity of spirit.

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