Saturday October 7, 2023 From Practicing Extravagant Generosity: Daily Readings on the Grace of Giving
All the Good You Can “You are familiar with the generosity of our Master, Jesus Christ. Rich as he was, he gave it all away for us—in one stroke he became poor and we became rich.”
— 2 Corinthians 8:9, The Message Where God’s Spirit is present, people give. John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, wrote:
Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can, As long as ever you can.
John Wesley taught extensively about the use of money, the danger of riches, and the importance of giving. For Wesley, all things belong to God. This changes how we perceive the manner by which we earn money and save money, causing us to do so in appropriate ways. And it changes how we spend money, making us more responsible, and shapes how we give money. Wesley valued industrious and productive work, but he believed that acquiring money does not provide a profound enough life purpose to sustain the human spirit. When he wrote, “Earn all you can, save all you can, and give all you can,” he drew an unbreakable link between acquisition and generosity, inviting us to use our material wealth to deepen our relationship with God and to increase our positive impact for God’s purposes.
No stories from Scripture tell of people living the God-related spiritual life while fostering a greedy, self-centered, self-serving attitude. Knowing God leads to generosity.