The fall is my favorite time of the year. I used to refer to it as my “pumpkin day, Turkey Day, Gift Day” beloved season of life. Of course, I am referring the joy of receiving “my” candy across trick or treats, “my” beloved turkey leg at Thanksgiving, and “my” presents at Christmas.
Then it dawned on me one day that the “joy” I was feeling was from all the things I was “receiving” – gifts given by others so that I may know “my” joy. That’s when my perceived joy began to wane. It occurred to me that I was missing the real point. I realized that true joy comes in sharing “what I have to give” with the world. Originally, I didn’t know God had built me with a need to give to others but I now know that to be true. It’s where I sense God’s profound joy. It’s where my spirit dances with the Spirit of God.
That understanding grew out of my faith. As the gift of faith established deeper roots in me, I began to see the world in a new way. Once I thought I was here to take all that I could take. Now I know beyond any shadow of a doubt that I am here to give all that I can give. Faith really changes us. Faith really changed me. Now I really do know where the source of my joy resides – and it’s not in candy, turkey legs, or gifts under the tree. Instead, I absolutely thrill at the feeling of God using me to give to others.
Perhaps that’s why the Generosity Journey season is now my favorite season of life. I know that sounds so weird. But I honestly think it is true. I hope you have had a chance to place your Generosity Journey “2020 Estimate of Giving” cards into the locked treasure chests at one of the entrances to our church. We have 3 weeks to respond. For me, it is a moment of taking a stand in the true joy of my faith. Nothing will deter me. Nothing will distract me. I know God’s Joy as “I give.” I invite you to join with me in this ultimate joy!