Sometimes it seems the more you have materially, the less you are sure about giving it away because you can’t imagine life without it all. Some of the richest people I have known are also the meanest, the most penny-pinching in attitude. The most generous are those with next to nothing.
I remember one evening when I worked on a street theatre/outreach team and had no income and literally no cash at all (but at least I had a roof over my head, which is richer than some), I came home to find a parcel in my room. Some old friends had visited while I was out and left a parcel of soap, toothpaste, face cloths, toothbrushes, shampoo – lots of basic toiletries that I couldn’t afford to buy. BUT the key thing was, they left me two of everything.
They understood a principle there, that when you have nothing, you actually yearn to have something to give away. So I took great delight in giving away all the extras to other people on the team who also had none. I didn’t care that once it was gone it was gone. I didn’t want to keep the extras for when they ran out, I just loved the look on people’s faces when they got something they needed. I think God’s the same!
God always has an abundance to give away and He is like the kid pouring the glass of milk – it always overflows and goes all over the table. He doesn’t see it as a waste, but as plenty. The trick, I guess (and I often forget it in truth) is that He always has plenty of what you need so you’ll have some to give away, but trusting Him to do it again and again and again……….that’s a toughie if you have a lot to start with somehow. Cos the more you have, the more you have to give away and the bigger and scarier the gesture I guess. I think I was more generous when I had less in many ways.
Isn’t it David who says Lord, don’t give me riches and don’t give me poverty. Just give me what I need. If I am poor, I may steal bread and dishonour your Name; if I am rich, I may forget You. Just give me enough. I would add, just give me enough and a bit more so I can share it. Or give me the courage to handle plenty with a generous heart like Yours, trusting You, who are no man’s debtor.