The Power of Generosity


By Sandra Seaborn, Associate Priest
Listen Online

Posted on May 4, 2017

To be generous is to show a readiness to give more of something than is necessary. It’s seen in the person who gives time or money to someone in need, or simply stops to listen to a friend. The neighbour who puts out your recycling bin, or the stranger who pays for those standing in line behind her. Generosity involves showing kindness, looking after those less fortunate, putting others first and giving to God’s ministry.

As Christians, we find our inspiration in Jesus Christ, who showed ultimate generosity when He lived on earth and gave His life for us: “You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.” (2 Corinthians 8:9)

However attractive generosity is in others, we struggle to give time and let go of stuff. Our eyes are easily captivated by glitter and glamour even though our hearts long for simplicity. We might try de-cluttering periodically or get motivated to give around tax time, but our habits show us to be people who give out of excess when times are plentiful. Yet generosity involves going above and beyond, past the norm, getting a little uncomfortable and even sacrificial.

How then can we cultivate genuinely generous hearts? Actions not done of duty but from a place of gratitude and joy. What can we do to re-orient our thinking, to look beyond our discomforts or fear of not having enough?

Over the next four weeks of our new sermon series we will witness the power of generosity. We will see what transpires when people meet Jesus. We will watch what happens as four diverse people: a young boy, a poor widow, an immigrant with a sick child and a scamming tax collector, cross paths with the rabbi-carpenter from Nazareth. We will find sharing leading to abundance, the capacity to see beyond scarcity, the restoration of life, and a transformation of community; all possible through the power of generosity.

God is generous by nature. From creation to redemption the Bible spotlights God’s generosity in forgiveness, grace and restoration. By considering these four vignettes from the time of Jesus together, we hope you will get a taste of the deeply transforming power of generosity.