Acts 2:42-47 - And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
The early church was generous—too generous, some people today would say. They were selling property and sharing with the poor like there was no tomorrow. And they were happy! As Luke says, they had "glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people." What could cause this sort of generous joy?
There's one time it's incredibly easy to be generous, and that's when you yourself have just received the gift of a lifetime. Who can be stingy when your heart is overflowing with joy and gratitude? That was the case with these Christians, and it's the case for us today, too. Why? Because God Himself has poured out all His riches upon us, and we are so blessed we hardly know where to turn.
Think about it. What has God given us? Life—joy—forgiveness of sins. The promise of a new heaven and earth with no evil or sin to trouble us. Jesus, God's own Son, to be our Savior. The Holy Spirit, to live within us and keep us forever.
And since Jesus is God made visible for us—what has Jesus done for us in particular? Become a human being, leaving the glory of heaven to share our difficult lives on earth. Healed and taught and preached and forgave, with all patience and kindness. Proved to us through His actions that every human being matters to God, however poor or oppressed or young or old. Laid down His life for us on the cross, so that we might be forgiven and set free from the power of evil. Rose from the dead, so that everyone who trusts in Him will share that same everlasting life and joy. Promised to return to take us to be with Him forever—so that we need not fear the future. We know the One who rules life and death, and He holds us in His own scarred hands.
These are just a few of the overflowing gifts of God He has heaped on us. Faced with His love, we respond with gladness—and God's generous love overflows through us to others.
WE PRAY: Father, open my heart to share Your blessings with others—and show me the specific ways You want me to do that. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.
1. Name one of the happiest days in your life.
2. Tell about someone who has been generous in some way to you. What motivated them?
3. When you are joyful, how do you share that joy with others?
Today's Bible Readings: 1 Samuel 7-9 Luke 18:24-43
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