Generosity

This is theme for last weeks readings. I was away at Synod and Bonnie Hebenton wrote this and preached. I am sorry to have missed what she said.



Matthew brings God’s generosity into focus in today’s gospel reading. The words 'genius' and 'generous' come from the Latin root 'genere' meaning 'to beget, give birth to or bring forth.' To have a genius for life is to possess the ability to generate warmth and well-being in others. Largess literally enlarges our lives. Have a look at what some thinkers and theologians of our time have to say about generosity.

Henri Nouwen in Sabbatical Journey writes "I think that generosity has many levels. We have to think generously, speak generously, and act generously. Thinking well of others and speaking well of others is the basis for generous giving. It means that we relate to others as part of our 'gen' or 'kin' and treat them as family. Generosity cannot come from guilt or pity. It has to come from hearts that are fearless and free and are willing to share abundantly all that is given to us."

Desmond Tutu writes in God Has a Dream: "Like humility, generosity comes from seeing that everything we have and everything we accomplish comes from God's grace and God's love for us. In the African understanding of ubuntu, our humility and generosity also come from realizing that we could not be alive, nor could we accomplish anything, without the support, love, and generosity of all the people who have helped us to become the people we are today. Certainly it is from experiencing this generosity of God and the generosity of those in our life that we learn gratitude and to be generous to others."

Catholic priest Edward Hays in Prayer Notes to a Friend suggests: "Make extravagant generosity your greatest vice and become God-like."

How is your life generous and how has God been generous to you?

 

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