THIS WEEK: Impact of Generosity
What would you say is the greatest barrier to generosity?
Is it lack of possessions? Is it the lack of opportunities to be generous?
The greatest barrier to generosity is greed.
Generosity is more a condition of the heart than an activity of the hands. When our hearts are captivated by greed, our hands find it hard to give. When our hearts are captivated by the generosity we have received, our hands find it easy to give.
Greed, perhaps, sounds like a strong word. It’s hard to admit “I’m greedy.” However, as the Lord is apt to do to keep our hearts close to him, he points out some manifestations of greed as well as warns us of the consequences of the same.
- Greed leads to finding fulfillment in the things I have.
Luke 12:15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”
- Greed leads to a heart of discontent.
1 Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.
- Greed leads to ruin and destruction.
1 Timothy 6:9 Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
A heart captivated by greed, material wealth, possessions and the desire to GAIN more will have a hard time GIVING more.
The warnings are clear. A heart captivated by greed cannot also love God. So our loving and generous God calls us by the power of his Spirit to repent and turn away from greed.
Ephesians 5:3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.
Colossians 3:5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.
So with God’s help, let’s walk in step with the Spirit and have our heart filled with and driven by the generosity of our Savior. Realize each day that our connection to Christ is the most valuable possession we can have.
Apply: Take inventory of where your heart is tempted by greed. Ask the Lord for forgiveness and power to find contentment in knowing that in Christ we have what is most valuable.
Prayer: Father, thank you for convicting my heart of greed. I desire to be generous as you have been with me. Forgive me for pursuing the abundance of possessions. Lead me to always be filled with an abundance of your grace. AMEN.