Friday, December 10, 2010

Generosity


“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Luke 6:38

A few weeks back on Thanksgiving weekend I was asked by a homeless man for a little help and I ignored him. Hoping he would just go away, I turned a blind eye to his begging and thought he would get the clue. He didn’t. He continued to say, “I am just down on my luck and any little bit would help”. I didn’t hear this. I heard, I am just lazy and I don’t want to get a job, hold down that job, and pay my bills like every other grown-up. My deaf ears were gently interrupted when my 6 year old son reached into his pocket and gave the man what little change he had. I was angry at first that the man had begged so long, and so loud that it caught the attention of my 1st grader. But then later something happened. That man’s face stayed in my head and I kept hearing him say all the things I was thinking like, “I’m not a drug addict, or an alcoholic, I just hit some tough times”.

And then I realized,somewhere along the way I have stopped having a generous spirit.

It got me thinking about what a cynic I have become and why? I could say that it’s because I have come to my senses in my old age and am no longer taken for the fool with “those” homeless people. I could say that if I gave to every homeless person that stopped me in Seattle I wouldn’t be able to feed my own children with what was left. I could say that I am practicing tough love. But all of this would just be an excuse.

The reality is that a part of my heart has become hardened to the troubles of others. I have enough troubles of my own and at some point my capacity for “troublesome” life must have just gotten overloaded and hardened.
I know it seems cliche but this holiday season I am wanting a heart that is softer, kinder to those in need. Not just those in need of money but also those who might just need a friendly face, a hug, a listening ear. I know these are goals I can’t manage on my own. I know this will come with a change of heart and so I am asking My Creator for help.

This reminds me of a worship song;

“Purify my heart let me be as gold and precious silver.
Purify my heart cleanse me from my sin deep within.
Refiners fire, my hearts one desire is to be holy, set apart
for you Lord.
I choose to be holy set apart for you my Master ready
to do your will.”

Today as I sit and type this and remember that man on the street all over again, I pray a blessing over him. For although I didn’t give one at the time I am wanting to give one now, and I know God knows exactly who I am talking about. I also know that it is NEVER too late to have a change of heart.

Generosity.

What a beautiful word.

2 comments:

Plucky said...

WOW . . . Not much I can say to this one except for such words as "powerful" . . . "thoughtprovoking" . . . "insightful" . . .

Good stuff my dear friend . . .

noel said...

Thanks Tim. Still thinking about it myself. SO much so that I want to blog something else but I am kinda stuck on this generosity train and can't seem to get off.

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