A prayer to practice generosity
‘One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
A generous person will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.’ (Proverbs 11:24-25)
‘Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.’ (1 Timothy 6:6-10)
‘Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.’ (2 Corinthians 9:7-8)
God is a generous God, and everything we have is a gift from Him. Learning to be generous is an act of worship; using the money and resources He has given us to bring Him glory and be a blessing to those around us.
Generosity is not measured by the amount we give, but the manner in which we give it. Someone can have very little, but the little they give in faith may please God more than a large amount given reluctantly.
Take some time to reflect on these questions, and ask God to help you grow in the practice of generosity:
- Do you find it easy or difficult to be generous? Is giving a joy for you? Why, or why not?
- God promises to bless us when we give. He doesn’t promise to pay us back pound for pound, but He is generous and faithful. Think about times you have experienced God’s generosity towards you. How does that encourage you today?
- How have you experienced generosity through others who have given sacrificially? How does that experience encourage you to bless others similarly?
- Are there any ways in which God is prompting you to grow in generosity this week?
Our generous Provider,
There is nothing I have
That has not come from your hand.
Every act of generosity on my part
Is only a response
To the generosity with which
You have already blessed me.
I reject the image of success,
Into which this world tries to shape me.
An image defined by
Instead, I ask that you
Would remake me in your image.
An image defined by
May I model my giving
On the one who gave it all.
And may others see in me
A glimpse of your character,
Against which the riches of this world.
Seem dull and worthless.
Would you cultivate in me
A spirit of contentment.
Help me not to strive for more and more,
But grow in gratitude,
For all the ways you have blessed me.
Would you mold within me
A generous heart,
Empowering me to give sacrificially,
Not under compulsion,
But in joy and faith.
Generosity is not always just an individual act. It can be something you do together as a community, and we can help one another grow in the practice of generosity. Prayerfully consider whether you should reach out to a friend and do one of the following this week:
- Talk to a trusted friend about generosity and giving. Ask them how they have learnt to grow in generosity.
- Is there someone to whom God is asking you to be generous this week? They may be within the church, or not part of the church. Consider blessing someone financially, or with an act of service. You may want to ask a friend to be a go-between for you, if you would rather keep your gift anonymous.
- Consider whether there is a particular need or cause that you can support together as a Connect Group; something local to you, or about which you are all passionate. Remember, generosity may not be just about giving money, but volunteering your time.
If managing your finances is a challenge for you, you may want to check out the CAP Money Course, which is a great way to learn how to be a better steward of your money. If you would like to learn more about giving, or consider giving regularly to the church, check out the giving page on our website.