Some oxymorons (actually, the plural is oxymora) are seriously funny: Jumbo shrimp. Honest liar. Scheduled spontaneity. Microsoft Works. Here’s one I’d like to add to the list: Stingy Christian. As far as I’m concerned, there ought to be no such thing.
I think Christians need to be the most generous people in the whole world! I am convinced of this once again in this season of Good Friday and Easter Sunday. On Good Friday, we remember how God gave His one and only Son to die for our sins. Who can imagine a more generous act than this? What more is there to give? And then on Easter, we celebrate the resurrection and the reality that in Christ, we have eternal life. How can anything be longer than eternal? To say that God is generous in His grace to us in an understatement!
It’s a terrible irony, then, that Christians (myself included) can be so terribly stingy. And I’m not just talking about finances (though I like keeping a tight grip on my cash as much as the next guy). I’m talking about a generosity of spirit, of hope, of love. People filled with the Holy Spirit of Jesus should not be able to help but reflect the kind of generosity we see in our Lord. But how often don’t I fight that spirit of generosity and keep the joy and blessings I have in Christ to myself?
One of my regular prayers is for God to nurture generosity within me that shows through kind words and helpful actions, through my patience and joy, through how I use my time and steward my finances. Generosity is one of the best characteristics of God that the Holy Spirit empowers us to imitate! Anyone who thinks otherwise is clearly confused (…to end with another oxymoron!).