Daily Devotions
 
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

Daily Devotion

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son….

When we talk about generosity it is important to remember that it all begins with God.  God takes the first step in abundant generosity—offering us the gift of his Son and the gift of life.  Any generous act on our part is done in response to what God has done for us.  God blesses us and we are invited to share those blessings with others.  Being generous increases our joy because we see God’s goodness not only blessing us but also blessing others through us.  One of my favorite prayers is one that we often pray in worship at the time of the offering.

Merciful God, we offer with joy and thanksgiving what you have first given us—ourselves, our time and our possessions, signs of your gracious love.  Receive them for the sake of him who offered himself for us, Jesus Christ, our Lord.  Amen.

I love this prayer because it reminds us that God acts first when it comes to generosity. It reminds us that our natural response is joy and thanksgiving.  It reminds us that all that we have, everything—ourselves, our time and our possessions come from God and reveal God’s love for us.  Finally the prayer reminds us that we offer our whole selves back to God as a response to the new life we are given through the generous gift of Jesus’ life, given for our sake.

Just as breathing is essential to being human, giving is essential to being a Christian. Jesus constantly gives us love and life and forgiveness. How can you put more emphasis on giving in the days ahead? It could be by giving money, by giving your time to someone who needs it, or by offering your talents. Be open to opportunities for giving this week and commit to one way you will share what you have with others.  

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