One of the greatest joys of the past three years has been the experience of generosity in being part of the Trinity Central family. Nowhere is this more clearly on display than in our Gift Days. From the earliest days in the Roundhouse to the simply mind-blowing Gift Day we had last year, the extravagant response to God has been breathtaking.
Money is a resource that reveals our hearts. If you ever want to do a ‘self-check’ on how you’re doing in living for God then your bank statement is a great place to start! Where we spend our money reveals where our priorities really are!
One of the characteristics of God is generosity. The way in which He provides for us in everyday life is extravagant. Not only does He fill our lives with good things like relationships, purpose, material provision and blessings, but He has created a beautiful world for us to enjoy and in which to find Him. More than anything else, the Father’s generosity is displayed in the giving of His own Son for us on the cross.
Jesus invites us into a new life with Him in which generosity forms a central part. Rather than being takers we become givers. We are blessed in order to bless. We are provided for in order to provide for others.
Generosity provides us with four wonderful opportunities:
Worship: the opportunity to give to God among His church, blessing and providing for the work which He is doing as an act of worship. It takes us beyond singing, into the act of taking what we have and laying it before God.
Participation with God: when we give we become participants in what God Himself is doing. As we step into generosity we partner with God – what a privilege! In giving our resources, we resource ministry that will impact other people’s lives.
Investment: Jesus told us that it is possible to store up treasures in heaven – that the way we use our resources on earth will have an eternal impact. If you want to find an investment that just keeps on paying out… well, an eternal one seems like a pretty good place to do that!
Giving in the Kingdom ends up being to our credit – there’s a deal you can’t afford to miss out on!
Putting sin to death: the natural inclination of the human heart is to seek to gain, rather than to give. Generosity gives us an opportunity to kill sinful desires in our lives – by refusing to give in to an inclination to be extravagant with ourselves, and rather giving into the Kingdom, we discipline our own hearts and take deliberate steps toward being more like Jesus.
Jesus taught that we cannot serve two masters: God and Mammon. This was the only time Jesus ever referred to a false God, and in this instance he created a word to describe idolatry related to money. Thus, money can be a snare to us, or an opportunity to work out Godliness in our lives. Money always presents us with a choice.
Over these past years, God has displayed immense generosity to us as a church in our Gift Days. He has done that through the faithfulness of a group of people who are happy to lay their lives down in service of Him.
In a few weeks time, we get to do it again! Let’s walk a faith adventure together when it comes to generosity, trusting God to meet our needs and giving abundantly from all He has given to us.
What a privilege it is to be on this journey together!