Generosity

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What is something God cannot do without? According to 2 Corinthians 9:7 in the Amplified translation, he can’t do without “a cheerful, joyous, prompt-to-do-it giver whose heart is in their giving.”

Christmas is a time for giving, as we all know. Sometimes the purpose of our heart is not to give. Sometimes we give because we have to. Have you ever given somebody something because they gave you something? Many times I’ve heard people say they needed to send someone a Christmas card because one was sent to them. OR how about buying someone a gift because they bought you one?

God’s not looking for us to give without having heart. 2 Corinthians 9 talks about allowing giving to be the purpose of our heart. It exhorts us to give not because we have to and not to give reluctantly, half-heartedly, or unwillingly. It should be a main part of the purpose for living.

God’s nature is to give and if you are a Christian, it’s your nature too. John 3:16 is the most familiar verse in the world. What does it say about God? It says because he loved, he gave. This doesn’t mean we only give to people we love. God gave to us while we were in a vile state, as sinners. God didn’t love that about us, but he loved us and wanted us to be part of his family. The only requirement for it was to receive his son, Jesus as the Lord of our lives. It was to receive his gift.

When someone is given a gift, they can receive or not. They can decide to use it or let it sit on a shelf. It’s the same with the free gift of God in Jesus Christ. We can receive him and allow him to make a difference in our lives, or hear the truth and let it sit dormant somewhere, or say “No, I don’t want this gift.” It seems crazy for us to do either of these things, but we do.

When my husband, Robb, first received the Lord, I said, “No thanks. I’m a good, religious person. I’m not like you.” Then I saw the change God made in Robb’s life. He was a completely different man. It was faith in God that changed him. I realized I needed what he had. He had a relationship with God that I did not have, although I was religious.

Let’s get back to allowing giving to be the purpose of our heart. When we have God’s nature in us, we can give to people we don’t want to because it’s the purpose of God’s heart to be a giver. Our purpose should be to give, not because we have to, but because we get to. What a joy and privilege it is to give to others! 

During this Christmas season allow God’s love to control you so the purpose of your heart is to be a giver like he is.

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!

Gratefulness

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Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. For me, it paves the way for Christmas. I love to give, but being thankful puts me in a frame of mind to be more giving.

I think it’s really good to focus on being thankful before the Christmas season begins. Thankfulness gets us to thinking about what we have and how blessed we are all year long. Then we won’t be disappointed when we don’t get what we want and we won’t become self-centered. Gratefulness paves the way for being a giver.

Grateful people are giving people even when they don’t have a lot. They give of themselves as well as give what they have.

There are lots of benefits to being a thankful person. Here are a few I’ve found.

Grateful people are happier.

Gratefulness improves our relationships.

Gratefulness improves our health. 

An attitude of gratitude causes us to be more optimistic.

Gratitude increases our ability to appreciate and enjoy the good things in life.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 states it very simply – “No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”

God wants us to be thankful. He’s given us everything in Christ Jesus. What more can we ask for? As we think about all he has done for us, it should cause us to be grateful from now and throughout eternity.

I want to encourage you to keep a gratitude journal. Every day write down at least one thing you are thankful for. You can write more than one if you like. It will help to keep your perspective on the good report. It will make your life better in every way. It will bring you great peace.

Most Important Gift

Most Important Gift

It’s the day after Thanksgiving and my thoughts have gone from thankfulness to gifts. Thankfulness and gifts should go hand in hand. Because we are thankful we should give gifts. We should be thankful to be able to give gifts and be thankful when we receive them. It made me think about what a gift life is and how if we are not thankful, we do not cherish it and are not aware of all the gifts we receive on a daily basis.

Attitude Of Thanksgiving

Attitude Of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a great time of year to get our perspective in the right direction. It’s easy to focus on what is not going right in our lives or on what we don’t have, instead of what is right and being thankful for what we do have. Thankful people are happy people. When we are thankful it produces a joy in us that can’t be taken away unless we allow something negative to permeate our thoughts.