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October 18, 2020 | Doug Sauder
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"Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment.”—1 Timothy 6:17 (NLT)
By now you should have a little context for the character of God and why He is so generous: He’s loving, kind, merciful, compassionate, and forgiving. Over the next few days, we’re going to see His love, kindness, and compassion in action!
Think of the things you love. What comes to mind? Your family and friends? Your favorite foods? The beach? Taking a walk in the great outdoors under the stars? A beautiful piece of music, art, or literature? Sharing a great laugh with someone? Your pet? It all comes from God! All of it.
You see, James 1:17 (NASB) tells us, “Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights.” And according to the apostle Paul, He richly gives us these generous gifts for our enjoyment!
He made food a delight to our palate, music a pleasure to our ears, and art a refreshment to our souls. All these good things show us His passion and creativity. He made us to share laughter, love, and deep friendships. And because He is a relational God, He created us to crave and thrive in relationship so we can get a glimpse of what a relationship with Him is like. He made the stars and the sea and all of nature so we can walk in His beauty every day and know He is real and true and good just by looking up, down, and all around us!
When it comes to goodness, He didn’t hold back. “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good” (Genesis 1:31 NIV). The Hebrew word for good here is tobe, which means “beautiful; excellent; pleasant to the higher nature; giving pleasure, happiness, prosperity; so agreeable and pleasing.” It speaks of that which is of the highest quality, the very best. This is how the Lord made us and how He made all that we were meant to experience and enjoy!
Not only was He generous in creation, but in provision. He is generous to provide us all things, everything we need, to provide for us that which is best for us, even if we don’t always see it or understand.
Consider what Jesus said in Matthew 7:11 (NIV): “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him.” Reflect on Matthew 6:28–30 (NIV): “See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you?”
Finally, God is also generous in the trials and tribulations of life. It sounds strange to consider the hardships we experience as a gift from God, but when we look in the Bible, that’s exactly what we see (Romans 5:1–4; Philippians 1:12–20; Hebrews 12:11; James 1:2–4; 1 Peter 1:6–9, 5:10).
Why? Because God’s always working! He wants to do something amazing in the trial. He wants to build us up, grow us, refine us, purify us, and transform us through the tribulations. And He often uses those moments to speak redemption and restoration into the lives of others.
So, yes, even the storms of life can clearly show us the generosity of God. We just need to view them through the same lens the apostles did and ask the Lord to do His will and His work in us through it.
Today, write a list of 25 ways you have seen the generosity of God in your life. It could be as profound as a miraculous pregnancy or as simple as how good pizza tastes. It’s all from Him!