The Spirit of Generosity

Posted on 30-Nov-2014

By Corporal Brendan Eu Che-Jie of 12th Kuala Lumpur Company

October 25th, 2014

The term “generous” denotes one who freely gives to others, one who is willing to share — without expecting anything in return. Someone who gives manipulatively, i.e., anticipating something in return eventually, is merely a “user,” not a real giver. But, surely, we all would like to be viewed as generous. On the other hand, we doubtless would be repelled by the notion that our friends think of us as “stingy.” Universally, the niggardly person is seen in an unfavourable light. There is much information in the Bible which indicates how God assesses both the generous and the stingy person. He applauds the former and condemns the latter. Perhaps this is due to the fact that the tight-fisted individual is so unlike the benevolent Creator himself. God so loves that He gave us life.


And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. (Acts 17:25, New International Version)


Recently I have come to know about the poor and how much care they really need from the community. See, we get too indulged in our luxurious living that we even overlooked the feelings of these people. I had visited organisations such as SEMOA, an aborigine settlement located 10km away from Raub, Pahang. It was a pitiful sign that some little boys or maybe most of them do not even have proper shoes. Even so, I felt grateful that there were volunteers whom offered help to these people, or they would be in a worse state. I could see the joy on their faces when we reached the settlement that actually is a significance of eagerness.


Sometimes I would reflect upon this; while we were still here enjoying our lives, how did the poor live their life instead? Why do we even shut ourselves away from the good works of God? We as Christians were taught to share and lend our hand to the needy.


The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor (Proverbs 22:9, New International Version).


As mentioned before, God expects His children to be concerned about anyone who truly is in need. There are always those who wrongly take advantage of the generosity of people; but in spite of the abuse that will occasionally occur, the hearts of true followers of Jesus Christ lean toward being generous. Jesus Christ spent much time teaching in the temple at Jerusalem. On one occasion He was watching people placing offerings into the containers and witnessed a woman with a generous heart. She would not have been the only one with such a heart, but she was the one Jesus used to teach His followers a wonderful lesson in generosity from God’s point of view. Jesus stated this woman had placed more into the offering (in God’s view) than those who were able and wealthy. It was not that the wealthy did not give a substantial offering. But the measurement God was looking at was not monetary—He was observing the generosity of the heart. He is able to multiply any amount we give.


When we strive to conform the image of Christ and we stir up the Spirit of God, then our hearts must lean toward being generous. God’s Spirit imparts love, peace and joy within us and helps us reflect the character of God. His character is based upon love.


Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love (1 John 4:8, New International Version).


Followers of Jesus Christ cannot help but have a caring and generous outlook toward others in this world. It is this heart Jesus glimpsed within the woman who gave two mites. The amount did not matter—the heart mattered a lot.


Even if we are told to give, we should also use wisdom in giving. The Holy Scriptures, which contain the words and directions from God to man, also teach us some concepts of balance even when our hearts are overflowing with generosity. It can be difficult to say “no” (even when we may need to), but the Bible teaches us that God too sometimes says no. He says no to evil, to unrepentant sinners and to all that stands against Him. That “no” is preceded by every chance for repentance from His generous heart, but the time will come when all have had a fair chance. As God observes His children, He knows that our minds cannot grasp all the information that would allow us to make perfect decisions about who we are generous with. God never makes mistakes, but He does patiently endure the course mankind must follow as we search for Him. We may not have every fact, but we are to use wisdom as best we can in giving. Being generous does not mean giving foolishly.


Sometimes we need to gather additional information before deciding to be generous. Our generosity can be abused. It is a mistake to give to a person who misuses the gifts once we see that abuse. In all of this, though, it is still God who oversees everything and expects us to respond. We must always help regardless of any conditions. The Good Samaritan offered his assistance to a Jew that he did not know anything about. The Samaritan took the risk and helps him regardless of his qualifications and riches. He simply gave! When a need is present, we give. We cannot give what we do not have, but what we have, we give. That is what a generous heart does.



Page Created: 30th November 2014
Last Updated: 30th November 2014