As I write this we are still in advent, and during advent, I decided to try the Bible Society’s ‘Advent Challenge.’ Each day I receive an email with a simple small challenge. A number of the challenges included things like: giving money to charity, buying a Fairtrade product, and trying to be less dependent on technology for a couple of hours. Some of them are a bit easier than others. I did try to find a long queue in the shops one day, but there wasn’t a particular long queue the day I had to do that particular challenge. I have to say, some days I forgot, as the Christmas busyness took over. On the whole, though, the advent challenge has made me think how small acts can make a difference. Most of these small acts have only put me out a little during the day. However, through these practical small steps, it has made me a little more generous than I otherwise might have been.
Alongside each challenge is also a Bible verse, and quite a few of them corresponded to being generous. When you look for them, there are actually quite a lot of verses about being generous. Generous with our money, our talents and gifts, and our love. It makes sense that the Bible talks about that, as God himself is a generous God. God loves to give, God loves us also to reflect His own generous heart. During January we are going to be looking at some of those Bible passages about living a generous life, and how we might be able to put this into practice in small ways in our life.
As we start this New Year can I encourage you to think about all those things you have to be thankful for? As we do so, we may also like to think how we can be generous with the things God has given to us. Here’s a little challenge, if you choose to accept it. Why not write own, or post on facebook, one thing every day during the month of January that you are thankful to God for. I think you will be amazed to see how much God has given, how generous He is, and how much we have to give to other people.
I hope you have a thankful and generous New Year.