To give with generosity

2 Cor 9, 6-10

The one who so freely provides seed for the sower and food to eat will provide you with ample store of seed for sowing and make the harvest of your uprightness a bigger one you will be rich enough in every way for every kind of generosity that makes people thank God for what we have done.

For the help provided by this contribution not only satisfies the needs of God’s holy people, but also overflows into widespread thanksgiving to God; because when you have proved your quality by this help, they will give glory to God for the obedience which you show in professing the gospel of Christ, as well as for the generosity of your fellowship towards them and towards all. At the same time, their prayer for you will express the affection they feel for you because of the unbounded grace God has given you.Thanks be to God for his gift that is beyond all telling!

Generosity is part of the nature of God, as we have seen in the meditation on God the Father. We should give in a generous attitude along with a heart in joy. We are invited to look deeply into the heart of God, for the Lord wants us to become like Him. This includes to overcome our small and often tight heart. With every gesture of giving, even if we sometimes have to educate ourselves, we open the door to the grace of God. Our Father is not only generous, he is the Generous! This text is not just about sharing material goods, what we understand most easily. It goes far beyond and includes that we are willing generously to share the spiritual goods! If we cannot share material goods it will be hard to go even beyond this dimension.

All is a matter of the heart and therefore a matter of love. True love helps us grow beyond ourselves.

Let us think of the love of a good mother who is ready to do anything for her child. She will not recalculate or calculate what she has done – she will simply do it out of love for the child. If this love of God is deeply entered in the nature of the woman, the supernatural love is much stronger.

On the way of realizing the divine love your heart will be opened for all humanity. If we look at people through the eyes of God, if his kindness and generosity fills our hearts more and more, then not only is the material need of human beings a concern, but above all his spiritual purpose. It is the concern for the salvation of man, which was the strong motivation for St. Paul to bring the gospel to the world and at the same time he took care for the poor in Jerusalem. This belongs together, as is the case with God Himself.

However, we must be reserved if we realize that the way of the Church cares more for the material help of man than for his eternal salvation. The disciples did not primarily go out to offer people earthly bread and food and to assist in political matters, but their generosity was to spend their whole lives proclaiming the gospel. They have sown abundantly, and have thus abundantly harvested, namely, eternal life and the special closeness to God in eternity.

The deciding factor in the apostle’s request is the attitude of free giving and that this is related to God. This is beyond the etiquette that often exists in our human society: what you give and what you have to give back.

So it is not with the Lord, because he gives abundantly out of his loving heart.

We should learn this attitude and thus unfold the love in our hearts, which leads to such a fundamentally different attitude. Then we give without calculation, then we pray for people without counting, then we pass on the gospel without getting tired, because there is another reward waiting: The growth in the love and thus the proximity of God!