By Miriam Rossow
I often think of myself as a generous person. I love to have people over to my house for dinner, coffee, play-times, or big parties. I do not penny-pinch when it comes to money and I generally enjoy sharing my time to help others. I have watched as my parents show great generosity to those around them: family, neighbors, church family, and friends. They even let Justin live in the basement of their house while we were just engaged!
So the proverb for this week seemed to make sense to me, it did not go against everything that I am. And yet there is something deeper. There is something more than just not being worried about money or enjoying people’s company. It is a deep trust that as I live my life and share myself with those God puts around me He will work in that giving and sharing and provide just what I need and what those around me need and so much more. It is an understanding that I am not just giving out of my naturally generous heart, but out of the heart that fights against generosity. I am giving out of my last reserves, the things I have kept for myself. This is not generosity just when and how I choose. It is generosity even when I don’t feel like I can. This is generosity trusting in God and not expecting in return.
There are times in my life when this kind of generosity has been part of my life. And there are many times when it has not. When I am tired at night I often quit giving to my family. I think, “I have given all day. This is my time!” When I am driving down the road and see a homeless person I often think, “How do I know you will use what I give you in an appropriate way?” When a friend calls in need of some support and I have 4 kids running through the house and dinner to make and laundry and homework and….. I think, “Not now!” These are times when I can remember to trust that God will work as he always has and provide and multiply my generosity even beyond what I can imagine.
As I stepped out of worship Sunday there was a table overflowing with vegetables and flowers. These were product of the over-abundance of God. The people that provide for the Garden’s for Growth in August have seen first hand the generosity of God and his over abundance in providing. Their gardens are producing more than they can use and so they are sharing with others around them. This is the image this proverb gives us. An image of generosity that produces greatly even to an over abundance. That is the kind of generosity Jesus has for us and that I want to have for those around me! May this be produced in me daily!
I loved the refrain to the opening hymn, Gracious God, You Send Great Blessings LSB 782 at the 8:30 service, “Lord, we pray that we, Your people who Your gifts unnumbered claim, Through the sharing of Your blessings May bring glory to Your name.” This is my prayer as I learn to have a heart that sows generosity out of my reserves.
Here is another song that reflects the heart of generosity for those God places in your life. Give Me Your Eyes by Brandon Heath
To listen to a sermon on this proverb from one of our sites click here.