2015-12-20
Pastor Jonathan Falwell

Season of Generosity: Putting Grace Into Action

Memory Verse:
1 John 3:17
But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been discussing Generosity. What does it mean to live a life of generosity, to introduce a culture of generosity into our daily pattern of living. We’ve talked about what Christ called us to do, we’ve talked about the importance of it and last week, the results of living this type of life. Today, I want to talk about how to put it into action.

1 John 3:16
By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. 19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. 20 For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. 22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.
23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment. 24 Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.

1. Keep your eyes open for those in need
1 John 3:17a
But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need…

– It is difficult to see opportunities for generosity when we are distracted
– Knowing God’s heart is the first step to seeing others in need
– Take time this week to look at those around you to see what might be an obvious opening for you to live generously

2. Keep your heart open for those in need
1 John 3:17 …and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?

Luke 10:33
But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion.

– Have genuine compassion, don’t let your generosity be controlled by guilt or obligation

3. Keep your calendar open for those in need
1 John 3:18
My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.

– Actually schedule yourself some free time to see need
– Being too busy can keep you from living generously

4. Keep your arms open for those in need
1 John 3:23
And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.

James 1:27
Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.

1 John 3:16
By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

– Be ready, at any moment, to help those in need
– When it doesn’t fit into your plan, your schedule, or your desires

 

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