Nitty Gritty Generosity
“. . . one heart and one soul; . . .” Acts 4:32
Economics is a spiritual issue. In the Christian world we are used to hearing high and mighty, lofty and grand words about money. We are used to reading books that make pious and unrealistic claims of quick wealth. Here in these verses, we see the down and dirty, the nitty gritty of generosity.
There’s no flash here. Just gracious giving as it should be. They didn’t claim ownership of their possessions. No one said, “that’s mine, you can’t have it,” they shared everything. Wow! What a shock to the system. The example of the early church teaches us to remember that where our possessions are, our hearts will be also.
To speak of money is to speak of spiritual things. Luke, in his gospel, deals with money matters. The parables of the debtors, the Good Samaritan, the rich fool, the unjust steward, the rich man and Lazarus, the parable of the pounds. The message of these stories is that wealth is a spiritual issue and a danger. The rich man could not part with his wealth and another rich man was declared a fool for relying on overstocked barns. If wealth poses such a danger, then what is our hope?
The same wonder-working power of the Spirit that made the lame man walk, also enabled Barnabas to sell his field and give the profits to the apostles, who then distributed it among those in need.
The church is the paradigm of the kind of world God calls us into, where once the things we greedily coveted, the wealth and fortune we lusted for, are now placed in submission to God’s mission. The power which broke the bonds of death, fell like fire at Pentecost, the same power that made the lame strong. That same power now releases the death grip of money and possessions.
While we were still at our very worst, God made the generous move of providing redemption for our fallen condition. On that we can agree. All because of His great love for us. Let’s respond with nitty gritty generosity to those around us.
What ways can you live out nitty gritty generosity? Now go do it.