Knowing a thankful heart is a generous heart, we need to teach and model generosity to others. Why? Generosity is love in action! In John 1:16, John testifies to this truth, “We all live off God’s generous bounty, gift after gift after gift.” In turn, our generosity displays God’s character as Paul explains in 2 Corinthians 9:13, “You will be glorifying God through your generous gifts.” Of course, generosity does so much more as love in action!
Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:21, “Your heart will be wherever your treasure is.” In other words, generosity draws us closer to God. A few verses later (vs. 24), Jesus tells us generosity also defeats materialism, when He says, “You cannot serve both God and money.”
Jesus also teaches generosity deepens our joy when he affirms, “There is more happiness in giving than in receiving.” (Acts 20:35). John goes on to tell us generosity also develops our capacity to love in 1 John 3:17 when he proclaims, “If you see some brother or sister in need and have the means to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to God's love? It disappears. And you made it disappear.”
The fact that generosity draws us closer to God while deepening our joy and developing our capacity to love might be enough to encourage us to be more generous but there is more! Our generosity demonstrates our faith as Paul explains in 2 Corinthians 9:13, “Your giving proves the reality of your faith…” Our generosity also determines our blessing as Jesus declares in Luke 6:38, when He says, “If you give, you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full measure...and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving will be used to measure what is given back to you."
But, possibly most important, our generosity here on earth is a deposit in eternity, as Paul tells Timothy, “Tell those who are rich not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which will soon be gone...Tell them to use their money to do good. They should give happily to those in need, always ready to share with others whatever God has given them. By doing this they will be storing up real treasure for themselves in heaven - it is the only safe investment for eternity!” (1 Timothy 6:17-19).
This week as we seek to live a life of thanksgiving, let’s look for ways to demonstrate generosity as love in action!