Devotional by Stephen Estock

November 25, 2013

“I wanna be a billionaire…Buy all of the thing I never had…
I wanna be on the cover of Forbes magazine smiling next to Oprah and the Queen.”
(“Billionaire,” Travie McCoy with Bruno Mars, 2009)

The song continues by saying if I had a billion dollars, everyday would be like Christmas. I would take care of a bunch of babies, give away a few Mercedes, grant somebody their last wish, and do a better job than FEMA did in rebuilding where Katrina hit. “Not a single tummy around me would know what hunger was.”

The message of the song resonates with many (including me). If I just had the money, I would use it to do so much good. I would show the world what generosity is all about.

But the issue of generosity is not about an amount of money; it’s all about an inclination of the heart. Jesus speaks of the generosity of God:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. (Matthew 5:43-45 ESV)

Through the power of the Holy Spirit, I have an immeasurable capacity to love; yet, I am prone to measure my generosity. I am not generous with patience. I am not generous with my time. I operate by an unspoken system by which I determine if someone deserves my effort and attention.

I am so far from the character of God.

His generosity is poured on the evil and the good. His generosity has been poured out on me, but I continually live in selfishness and fail to display his nature to others. I have resources to share with my “neighbor” and my “enemy,” but I keep them to myself. My imagination drifts to having a billion dollars, but I need to be more diligent in keeping in step with the Spirit, who will use me to dole out the immeasurable riches of Christ.

As you look at life today, think on the riches you have in Christ, and the generous nature of God by which those riches are yours. Take what you do possess and live as a child of your Father in heaven who “makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”