There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.Acts 4:34-35
Gives without the expectation of receiving anything in return
Has a positive attitude believing that the world can indeed become a better place
Trusts that their cause and focus is worthy and good and that those they give to will use whatever is given for good
Have a level of excitement and energy behind what they do and what they give their time or resources to
Not afraid to stand up and lead or promote a cause
“Do all the good you can,
by all the means you can,
in all the ways you can,
in all the places you can,
at all the times you can,
to all the people you can,
as long as you ever can.”
– John Wesley
Only gives of one’s time or resources if one feels like one will receive a benefit in return
Doesn’t believe that giving time or money will really help or change anything
Does not trust the people to whom there is a giving opportunity to make good use of one’s giving
Has a strong focus on saving money and never spending or using money on anything that is not absolutely necessary
“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”
– Winston Churchill
Causes of Weakness
Cares more for oneself than for others
No Role Models
Has never had role models who demonstrated what giving looks like and why to do it
Has had bad experiences with giving where the gift was not used wisely or ethically
May have grown up in some level of real or perceived poverty and thus learned to protect oneself financially and be overly careful using money
Unware of what skills, giftings, experiences and resources one has that could be shared freely with others
“Real generosity is doing something nice for someone who will never find out.”
– Frank Clark
Review the simple application steps below and choose 1 or 2 things you can do to spur yourself on to further growth.
CONSIDER BENEFITS: Reflect on the potential benefits of being generous. Generous people report to be happier, healthier, and more satisfied with life than those who are not generous. Being generous also creates a sense that you can make a difference in the world and help make it a better place.
BE GRATEFUL: Take time each day to think about all the things you have to be grateful for in life – or just for today. The more grateful you are, the more you will feel a desire to be generous to others and share your blessings and gratefulness with others.
START SMALL: If giving money scares you, start out with a small amount that you give each month or each week. Set a generosity goal for the year. Each year reflect on how you did and how you’d like to be generous for the year to come.
GIVE FIRST: As soon as you recieve any income for the month, commit to giving away a portion of it right away, before spending any money on yourself. This is in addition to your tithe, of course, but the idea of setting aside an amount to give is the same.
FAST: Consider fasting something that you normally spend money on each day, week or month. Take the money you would have spent on that thing and give it to a good cause.
BE PASSIONATE: Choose to give to a cause or person that you are passionate about. Being excited and passionate about something makes it much easier to be generous in your giving.
SPEND TIME: Spend time both with people in need and with generous people. Doing both will give you more of a heart and understanding of how and where to give of your time and resources.