Generous People are Happier!
So, leaders, are you leading here? I don’t know one pastor who doesn’t want the church he pastors to be generous. I think it is important to ask ourselves as individuals: are we leading in generosity? When we do, people around us notice, they see the example and the joy that it brings to a life. Then they tend to follow that example. We can see it here in this passage:
1 Chronicles 29:6-9
6 Then the leaders of families, the officers of the tribes of Israel, the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds, and the officials in charge of the king’s work gave willingly. 7 They gave toward the work on the temple of God five thousand talents and ten thousand darics of gold, ten thousand talents of silver, eighteen thousand talents of bronze and a hundred thousand talents of iron. 8 Any who had precious stones gave them to the treasury of the temple of the Lord in the custody of Jehiel the Gershonite. 9 The people rejoiced at the willing response of their leaders, for they had given freely and wholeheartedly to the Lord. David the king also rejoiced greatly. (NIV)
David led the way and then the people followed with great gifts of their own. If we want to have generous people, then we need to show the way.
This is true for churches as well. We fret about our finances and we want people to help us with the work of God in our city, but are we giving to works beyond ourselves? Are we giving to those who have needs that they cannot meet for themselves? Do we hear God’s whispers to help the poor and promote His work elsewhere in the world? When the church gives this way, it ensures God’s blessings will return upon it, and, even more importantly, it carries the same nature as the loving Father as a witness to the world. “For God so loved the world that he gave.”
2 Corinthians 9:6-13 says:
6 Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. 7 Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 9 As it is written: “He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor; his righteousness endures forever 10 Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. 12 This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. 13 Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. (NIV)
When we give generously we develop happy and grateful hearts and happy and grateful churches, and we ensure that God’s hand of blessing and provision is on us and the churches we serve in.
Givers carry more joy because they know they are unleashing God’s work and showing God’s love to the world. They know their lives are making a difference to build the kingdom of God and they have discovered that God will more than take care of their own needs!
Generous churches are the happiest churches I have seen, and generous people are the happiest people I know!!!
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