If I err, I want to err on the side of generosity – in finances, in time, in thought and in works. I fall short often. Yesterday morning at church as my pastor was preparing to receive tithes and gifts, I heard the first part as he quoted John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, he gave...” but then my mind began to reflect on some personal thoughts.
My Boy is visiting a friend’s cabin on Vancouver Island. The journey there includes a ferry ride which costs just under $17 for each way. We gave him $60 with express instructions to not spend the extra money unless it was absolutely necessary. While he was there, he texted me to tell me he had bought something for me. Instead of feeling grateful, I was annoyed. As much as I love presents, a gift for me is not necessary. I intended to speak with my Boy when he returned about the value of money and honouring through obedience.
God had a different perspective about it. To my Boy, his dad and I represent heaven’s abundance. He’s never experienced deficiency in finances because he lacks nothing of necessity. That’s not to say he receives everything he wants or is spoiled (that’s definitely not true). God loves to give, and as lovers of God who are being transformed in His image, Christians should be the most generous people on the planet.
God reminded me my Boy wasn’t willfully disobedient; he loves me and wanted to express his affection for me with a gift. How can a parent punish love? My Boy doesn’t have many opportunities to earn money so what he has is because we’ve given it to him. That sounds similar to me. Everything I have comes from God; I have nothing to offer Him except what He’s first given to me. And you know what? I’ve never experienced displeasure from God when I’ve brought Him a gift – my worship, my tithes, my time. How can I be displeased when my Boy gives me a gift?
My Boy is generous; my desire to err on the side of generosity has become his value too. I’m still learning about wisdom in stewardship but I learn best when I can feel the heartbeat of the Father. I need to extend the same grace to my Boy as the Father extends to me. And for the record, I love the gift he bought me. :)