Phil 419I’ve been thinking a lot this summer about the idea of generosity. How generous am I? Do I give freely of my money, my possessions, my time, my gifts? Am I generous with my words – do I always seek to build up, even when others are tearing down? Am I generous with my attitude, choosing to believe the best when the worst is staring me in the face?

The bottom line is this – do I really trust that God will provide me with enough when I am giving Him all that I have?

Truthfully, giving of my money is the easiest part. I can buy extra groceries for the food pantry, and I can give to the ministries of my church. I will contribute to any need at my son’s school, and I can help the family who has endured a tragedy.

But what about my time? I am stingy with my time. I don’t like interruptions to my schedule. I don’t always allow God to add His own appointments to my calendar. I want to schedule my ministry opportunities like they are doctor’s appointments.

What about my words and my attitude? When someone has slighted me, can I respond with a generous spirit? Will I return evil for evil, or will I instead respond with grace?

Can I be generous with my gifts? Can I share those attributes that God has given me with others? Am I courageous enough to give my gifts both back to the Lord and to a world that is waiting to know more about the One who made me?

You see, generosity is not as simple as throwing a little money at a problem. Certainly, God has called us to be generous with our money and our possessions. And as someone who frequently struggles with contentment in this area, I get how difficult that can be.

But I don’t think that God wants us to stop there. I think financial generosity is just the starting place for a giving life. I think that God wants all of us – everything we have, and everything we are.

The way we steward what He has given us – everything He has given us – is to give it away as He provides us the opportunity.

What has God given you – the things that make you YOU – that you need to share with the world? Will you be courageous enough this week to find one new way to live a life of generosity?