Core Values: God-Honorning Generosity

The Apostle Peter was called to a home where a generous woman had lived. Dorcas had died.  She lived in Joppa and she is called a “disciple” which means she was a learner.  She has an alternate name, “Tabitha”.  Tabitha is an Aramaic name and Dorcas is a Greek name. They both mean the same thing, “gazelle.”  A gazelle is a beautiful animal and Dorcas was a beautiful person. The Bible says in Acts 9 that this dear woman was always doing good and helping the poor. When Peter arrived, he was shown the clothes Dorcas had made for the widows in that area. The widows were weeping as they showed the clothing to this great Apostle of Christ. Peter dismissed the widows and others who were grieving. He got down on his knees, prayed, and said to Tabitha, “Get up.”  Tabitha was raised from the dead and presented to the mourners, alive! There are obviously several things to take away from this powerful event.  A very important thing to take away is the fact that Tabitha/Dorcas honored God with her wonderful generosity towards a marginalized section of society. A core value of our church is God-honoring generosity.

MondayWhat occupies your thoughts during the course of an average day?  I have found myself thinking, worrying and planning way too much for my physical needs.  I have had to refocus my thoughts many times away from self and on to the needs of  others.  Jesus reminds us that the treasure is where the heart is.  Matthew 6:21 is a  good reminder to us all to include in our thoughts the needs of others.

Tuesday…I have seen, as have we all, people begging for money.  Usually a busy intersection right by a traffic signal is the place these unfortunates choose. They always look desperate and almost always have a hand-lettered sign. Many thoughts race through my head when I see one of these people. The thoughts are usually negative. I am going to do better next time and exhibit generosity! Proverbs 19:17…read it!

Wednesday…In my childhood, I knew almost no one who had more than one TV, more than one car, central air, etc.  Now, those things are so common that they deserve no attention at all.  Let’s remember that through our church we can impact literally thousands of lives who need Christ and have serious physical needs that most of us cannot imagine.  Luke 3:10,11 remind us that having duplicates allows us to be generous!

Thursday…”What we own soon owns us.”  How true!  Ecclesiastes 5:12 reminds us of a powerful truth.

Friday…Bill Gates, he of Microsoft fame, is worth at least $65 billion.  So far, he and his wife, Melinda, have given away at least $28 billion. Cynics may say, “Sure, he can  give it away; look how much he has”, but they do not know his heart.  His goal is to give most of it away. The important thing is not to look at others but to lookat one’s self and come to this conclusion: “Since there are no pockets in shrouds and since we leave this life with nothing, I will make a difference and be generous.”