Tuesday, March 31, 2020

When Generosity Becomes a Movement

Generosity is more about what God wants for you than from you.  If I refuse to be generous, God will not go bankrupt.  Everything belongs to God anyway.  The following are my Bible study notes based on my pastor's sermon titled "When Generosity Becomes a Movement."

When Generosity Becomes a Movement
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When Generosity Becomes a Movement

One of the ways we reflect God in our lives is through generous living.  How do we live a generous life?  It begins with our resources.  There are several different levels of giving.

1.  Beginning Giver
2.  Consistent Giver
3.  Tither
4.  Expanding Giver
5.  Extravagant Giver

While deciding what kind of giver you are, consider who has your heart.  Does God have all of you?
But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. - Matthew 6:20-21

Also, consider the question, "Who is your leader?"
No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth. - Matthew 6:24
Are there other ways to be generous?  Yes.  We can be generous with:

*Gratitude:  Place a gift card in a note or generously tip your servers.

*Affirmation:  Praise others.

*Time:  Be where you are supposed to be and be on time.

*Serving:  Serve people.  Serve outside of your gifted areas.  

Generous living is not the act we do but it is in the way we live.  When you are growing in generosity, God is growing you up.  

Read John 6 (yep, the whole chapter).  You'll find it here at Bible Gateway.

Generosity is an opportunity to test our faith.  In John 6, Jesus was testing Philip.  Jesus knew what He was going to do but He wanted to see if Philip trusted Him.
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,” says the Lord of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows. - Malachi 3:10
Generosity is not in the amount you give.
There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these for so many people? - John 6:9
And this, not as we had expected, but they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God. - 2 Corinthians 8:5
Generosity always multiplies. 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish fed thousands.

There are two types of people:  Those who come to God for a handout and those who come to God to be a handout.

We can't out-generous God.
When they were filled, He said to His disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments so that nothing will be lost.” So they gathered them up, and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves which were left over by those who had eaten. - John 6:12-13
There were leftovers!  There were lots of leftovers.  You cannot out-generous God.  He will always multiply.
Now this I say, he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed; as it is written,
He scattered abroad, he gave to the poor,
His righteousness endures forever.”

Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness; you will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God. - 2 Corinthians 9:6-11
Remember the 3 Ps.

1.  Priority:  Make giving a priority.
2.  Percentage:  Change your percentages of giving if you need to as you follow God's leading.
3.  Progressive:  Always taking steps to give more. 

***Read all posts in the generosity series here.

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