Day 16 God is Generous

Day 16: God is Generous

He prayed to the LORD, "Isn't this what I said, LORD, when I was still at home? That is what I tried to forestall by fleeing to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. - Jonah 4:2

Admittedly, there are more convincing and pleasant passages about God’s generosity. But this one in particular challenges an attitude toward God’s generosity that we often have, but rarely acknowledge. God calls Jonah to prophecy to the Ninevites, and he reluctantly goes - after fleeing for a time. When God delivers the Ninevites, Jonah is frustrated because He gave them better than they deserved. Generosity is defined as “a readiness to give more of something than is strictly necessary or expected.” This is God’s attitude toward us, and it’s also the attitude He calls us to have with the people around us - especially those whom we feel don’t deserve it. Today as you self-reflect, ask for direction and challenge yourself with uphill habits - challenge yourself to become more generous specifically toward those who don’t deserve it.

Suggested Guided Prayer Focuses:
  • Lord, thank You that you are generous, even when I am not. When my desire to give is hesitant, Yours is eager. Thank You for being generous with me. (Spend some time thinking of specific ways God has been generous to you).
  • Lord, show me the people who, like Jonah to the Ninevites, I experience aversion to. (Take some time to sit and ponder here. Who comes to mind? A specific person at school or work? A people group that you don’t understand? Write these down - even if you don’t like what you hear).
  • Lord, continue to purify my heart, and bring me closer to Your image. Call me to generosity toward people that I (rightfully or wrongfully) believe are undeserving of it.

Action Steps:
  • Throughout the day, take note of the emotions you experience when something good happens for someone you’d tend to be averse to. Pray through these at the end of the day.
  • Be specifically kind and compassionate - not just civil or ‘neutral’ - with someone you believe is wrong or has wronged you. Buy them coffee, seek to understand, and give them kindness above what you think they deserve.
  • Do this for a week. Have you noticed any changes in your thoughts, feelings, or actions?

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