Generosity at Work

This is why I thought it was necessary to encourage the brothers to go to you ahead of time and arrange in advance the generous gift you have already promised. I want it to be a real gift from you. I don’t want you to feel like you are being forced to give anything. What I mean is this: the one who sows a small number of seeds will also reap a small crop, and the one who sows a generous amount of seeds will also reap a generous crop.

Everyone should give whatever they have decided in their heart. They shouldn’t give with hesitation or because of pressure. God loves a cheerful giver. God has the power to provide you with more than enough of every kind of grace. That way, you will have everything you need always and in everything to provide more than enough for every kind of good work.

 – 2 Corinthians 9:5-8

This is a scripture I shared as part of our stewardship campaign a few months ago- the apostle encouraging the Corinthians to participate in an offering he was collecting for the Jerusalem Christians. As a spiritual discipline, giving and receiving is a rhythm of gratitude. And generosity flows both ways- we receive gifts and we give gifts. You can probably see where this is going.

Thank you for your generosity, Spring Valley UMC!

On behalf of the church staff, thank you for the generous honoraria we received in worship last Sunday. I have received several notes of gratitude this week from various organizations our Missions Team recently supported: Network, Lydia Patterson Institute, Methodist Children’s Home. Anonymous givers left several gift cards to share with families in need. We will soon complete our financial commitments to various ministries around the world through our connectional giving as a United Methodist Church. This Sunday at our 5:00 (Spanish) and 7:00 (English) Christmas Eve services we will have an opportunity to share in a special Christmas offering for the new People’s Justice Garden at Temple Shalom in Dallas.

These examples of generosity are exactly what Paul had in mind for the church- we give out of our current abundance so that others are blessed. Thank you!

Giving God, as we recount the story of your gift of a Savior on that night long ago, we remember there were some who said, “There’s no room”, and others who responded, “Come, we’ll make room.” Help us give with a heart of abundance and not one of scarcity! On this holiest of nights, let us dwell with those whose chorus is, “Come, we’ll make room…,” remembering your abundant love for us. In the name of our Savior and Redeemer, we pray. Amen.