I already mentioned that our Sunday School class has been studying the fruit of the Spirit. Recently, after a lesson on self-control in financial matters, I gave the class a homework assignment — find a way to be generous this week, something beyond what you would normally do. Then I came across this quote by Richard Baxter (1615-1691) who was an English Puritan church leader, poet and theologian.
“Do not only take occasions of doing good when they are thrust upon you; but study how to do all the good you can, as those ‘that are zealous of good works.’ Zeal of good works will make you plot and contrive for them; consult and ask advice for them; it will make you glad when you meet with a hopeful opportunity; it will make you do it largely, and not sparingly, and by the halves; it will make you do it speedily, without unwilling backwardness and delay. It will make you labor in it as your trade, and not consent that others do good at your charge. It will make you glad, when good is done, and not to grudge at what it cost you. In a word, it will make your neighbors to be as yourselves, and the pleasing of God to be above yourselves, and therefore to be as glad to do good as to receive it.”
In other words, we should not only study to know God’s Word, we should study to apply it. Have you been studying this way?
For more on generosity see this post: