Who is the most generous person you know? I expect many of you will have thought of someone who gives large sums of money to many charitable organizations, but in and of itself that doesn’t define a generous person. You probably also know of people who use their donations to gain advantage or favor or even just prestige. Generosity, as the Bible defines it is more about a lifestyle of sharing whatever you have.
It may interest you to know that the Bible doesn’t have the word “generous” in the original languages. But the word often communicating that concept is more of a word picture. Proverbs 22:9 says that a generous person will be blessed because he shares his food with the poor. Literally translated it says a person with a good eye will be blessed.
So the picture of a generous person is one who is able to see needs that he or she can meet. It is a lifestyle of sharing the things and possessions you have; living as though what you have didn’t really belong to you but was provided for you to help others.
Like Luke 3:11 says, if you have two shirts give one to someone who has none. Our natural tendency is to think, “But what if I need my second shirt tomorrow?” Jesus says don’t worry about tomorrow, instead trust God and share with those in need.
I’ve seen this in action many times in big things and small. God gave a friend of mine a good eye when he looked at me and realized that he was planning on buying a Harley and he could give his old Kawasaki Nomad to me because I needed a bike. God gave another friend a good eye when she saw that our church didn’t have a good pump style carafe for dispensing coffee and, realizing she had two, left one at the church.
Being generous is a reflection of God’s character. “God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him might not perish but have eternal life.”
Today why don’t you practice developing a good eye? Look out for a need that you can meet through sharing what God has blessed you with.