Have you ever felt like God is sending you personalized messages to capture your attention or change your perspective?
During a recent Bible study of Romans, I felt like God was speaking to me through a very familiar verse: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.“ He nudged me to see generosity in light of this verse.
Two other experiences during the same week nudged me more. During my Art of Developmental Coaching course, I learned (my paraphrase) “To be different, you first have to see differently.” And then, a keynoter at a women’s leadership conference echoed the same thought. When it comes to generosity, how can I see differently so that God can help me be different? What does it look to not conform, to be different, to be transformed? As I tried to understand what God might be sharing with me, three ideas came to mind.
Spend time with givers. Abundance is a community effort.
In order to be generous, I first have to see God’s generosity at work—to me and through me as well as to and through others. In order to be transformed, I first have to renew my mind—to be different. I have to see differently. Taking my generosity journey together with Christian sisters shows me a daring new way of living. My sisters show me the way every day!
At a recent women’s retreat, my friend Lacie complimented one of the women attending on her dress. The woman, practicing the generosity they together had just explored during the session, gave Lacie the dress, and giggled about how she would explain arriving home scantily clad under her coat!
Try generosity. Abundance is a multiplier.
We know scarcity is a divider. Unfortunately, scarcity seems to be the human default. How might I adopt abundance more often? As a coach, I encourage people to try small experiments that help them to make little changes that, when aggregated, amount to big changes.
Of course, what works for others works for me too. I have learned so much by practicing generosity with my time, and maybe hardest of all, a treasure or two. At the start, I often can’t claim a right heart. With repeated practice, God helps me to be generous in spite of me. It’s always easier (and more right hearted) the next time. Thank God!
Believe God. Scarcity reminds me to trust only myself.
I actively seek to see the ways God is generous to me and others, moment by moment and day by day. I try to keep track of them too. Each night, the daily gratitude scan is helpful and each morning, praying to keep hold of God’s hand without running ahead helps me to trust Him, the one who is always and only good, to be my provider and guide my steps.
Join me! Let’s try this abundance thing together. See differently. Renew your mind. Enjoy being different, as a result of God’s transforming grace.