This week, Pastor Chris preached about God’s immeasurable generosity toward us. Once we recognize that all we’ve been given is a generous gift, we will learn the joy of generously giving away. Through Christ, we have been given everything we need in order to be generous. The world is looking for Christians to be a light amongst a dark, withholding, needy world. Choosing to hold loose to the financial gifts God has given us and extend them into the God’s Kingdom is our calling as Christ-followers.
- God is a Generous Giver – Do you ever have moments where you see God’s creation and stand in awe? God created us to enjoy the things He’s created and entrusted to us. It’s easy to fall prey to a stingy, withholding idea of God. We can say He’s generous without treating Him as such.
Psalm 19:1 (ESV)
1 The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Psalm 16:11 (ESV)
11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Genesis 2:7 (ESV)
7 then the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.
1 Timothy 6:17 (ESV)
17 As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.
James 1:17 (ESV)
17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.
Psalm 8:3–4 (ESV)
3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?
Generosity Defined: willing to share, ready to impart
Psalm 36:5–8 (ESV)
5 Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. 6 Your righteousness is like the mountains of God; your judgments are like the great deep; man and beast you save, O Lord. 7 How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings. 8 They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
John 3:16 (ESV)
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
- We are Created to Live Generously – There’s no lack to be found in following God. When we give, we’re transformed spiritually. Generosity is the best way for Christ-followers to show a watching and needy world the reason for the hope they have. When we generously give, we are investing in eternal things of real importance.
“The heart is an idol factory that takes good things … and turns them into ultimate things.”
– Tim Keller
2 Peter 1:2–4 (ESV)
2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. 3 His divine power has granted (given) to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4by which he has granted (given) to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.
2 Corinthians 8:9 (NLT)
9 You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.
- Generous People are Happy People – All studies show that the most happy people are generous.In contrast, those who cling tightly to their money will likely lack happiness and true joy.
2 Corinthians 9:6–8 (NKJV)
6 But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.
Proverbs 11:24–25 (ESV)
24 One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. 25 Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.
Luke 6:38 (ESV)
38 give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”
- Where do you find your security? Is it in your money or in the God who gave it to you?
- Do you struggle with entitlement? How does a recognition of God’s generosity wash away this issue in our hearts?
- Have you ever struggled with viewing God as stingy or withholding? How did you come to see this as a lie?
- How can our generosity as Christians serve as an apologetic to a watching, needy, and withholding world?
- Share a story of how you found true joy when you made a decision to give above and beyond.
- Is God asking you to stretch in a specific way to extend His Kingdom here on Earth? Open your heart to partnering with Him and ask Him to reveal how you can give above and beyond your normal tithe.
- Write down 5 specific, personal ways that God has generously given to you. Ask the Lord to grow thankfulness in your heart for these things. Let this usher you into generously giving.
- Where do you need to align or realign with God this week when it comes to your finances? How can you practically begin to generously give in response to how God has blessed you?
- Watch Ben and Kate Hull’s story on their journey toward generous giving. How did their story speak to you?