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Monday, April 25, 2011

Practice Giving

Two words came to my mind today.

Practice  Giving

For some, giving comes very naturally. 

They're the ones that are behind you in the grocery store and give you the extra $1.50 when the cashier tells you you don't have enough to pay for your food.

They're the ones that tip the waiter the little extra rather than figure out to the nickel what the gratuity should be.

They're the ones that offer the rides home, help the elderly neighbor mow her lawn, and spontaneously offer to buy all the neighborhood kids a popsicle from the ice cream truck.

They are givers.  Joyful ones.  You can tell -- they love to give!  And, they are an example to us of how our Father gives.  Like a waterfall that doesn't hold itself back, but generously pours itself out.

I have to say, I'm not quite there in such reckless giving.  My husband laughs at me as I check things to the penny (well, pretty close to the penny) and give only what is required.  No more.  No less.  Just what is fair.  I can be more focused on holding on to what I have for myself, than to offer it away.  It's a self-preservation mentality.

But, I know, I'm the one missing out. 

I think giving might just be one of the best kept secrets.  A man reaps what he sows.  So, in faith, as he joyfully gives, it boomerangs back to him. And, many times, in more abundance than what he originally gave.  He was trusted with little at first, but then given more to be trusted with in the return...of which, with the same attitude, he gives again, and is returned again with abundance.  The cycle continues and the man ends up being more blessed than if he had never given at all.  I can tell you one thing... I have never seen a giver not provided for.  Their well does not dry up.

Practice Giving.

For those that giving might not naturally occur (like me),  a conscious step into it might need to happen.  Begin to start looking outside yourself.  Outside your own immediate needs and agenda.  Begin looking and praying for an opportunity to give.  Some givers actually budget a 'miscellaneous giving' in with their spending.  They set aside a portion of money that they'd like to give away by the end of the month.  I love this idea because it makes the idea of giving fun and opens the door for our Father to begin opening our eyes to the needs around us.  Maybe it's not money though.  Maybe it's time.  Maybe it's service.  Maybe it's even prayer.  It's a focus shift from self to others.  And, it will ultimately teach us, as givers, that we truly are cared for in this world by our Father.  And, that we can relax and let go and let Him care for us and care for others through us. 

Practice Giving.

And, just see. 
Just see what our Father will do through us, and change our hearts to be reckless and amazing givers!


Carol Cool said...

Valerie, I appreciated your thoughts. I love to give money and things and find great joy in it. Giving time can be a little tougher for me, so I think I will practice that more in the days ahead.

Valerie Bailey said...

Thanks for your comment Carol. I was actually thinking of you as I was writing this one. You and Les are such great examples of givers! ;)