Thursday, February 16
Day 11: Sacrifice-Filled Generosity
Because of rising prices for almost everything—from eggs to used cars—the word “value” means a lot more than it used to. When we say we purchased something that was a good value, we are implying what we bought was worth what we spent. In fact, good value implies we got a good product rather inexpensively. We love products of good value because we often have experienced the bad feeling of overpaying for something. Thus, every time we purchase something we engage in a cost-benefit analysis. We make a decision based on the whether or not we think the product is worth the cost.
This parable describes a young, wealthy man who conducted a cost-benefit analysis. He wanted to obtain eternal life. He thought this was a great benefit. However, the cost was simply too much. Jesus told him to sell all he had and follow Him. However, this young man could not part with his wealth. For him, following Jesus was not worth the cost.
Sometimes we are not different from the young, rich man in Jesus’ parable. We often determine our level of generosity based on what something costs or how it benefits us. While this is not bad in some areas of our lives, it is not the right approach to generosity. True generosity gives regardless of the personal cost or whether or not the recipient of our generosity pays us back.
Spend time in prayer, following the Upward, Inward, Outward, Upward format.
Upward: Who God is; What God has done, is doing, will do
Inward: Who you are; How you live
Outward: Intercession for others
“God, forgive me for weighing the cost of following you to see what’s in it for me. Forgive me for being stingy in my generosity toward others. You gave me your very best in your Son, and I often view generosity as something that is too inconvenient. Help me to grow in my capacity for generosity and fill my heart with your love so that I may be generous to others regardless of what it may cost me. Guide us as a church in being sacrificial in our love toward others.”
Upward: Thanksgiving and Worship
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