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Generosity is compelling.

Generosity makes people smile...

airline travel might do the opposite.





Another travel day that would cost me an overnight? Yes.

First my airplane was delayed -- weather in Chicago this time.


Then, we checked in and took our seats. Wondering why we did not begin our taxi, I thought 'oh well', and picked up my book, only to hear the crackle of the microphone from the cockpit, 'Uh, ladies and gentlemen, this is the captain speaking ... mechanics have been called out to take a look at one of our tires. Sit tight, we'll get you out of here in a few minutes, and I will keep you updated.' Back to Colby and Beverly in my book.... 'Ladies and gentlemen, it looks like there are two tires that must be changed. We will have to unload you again. I'm sorry about that, but we'll get you on your way to Chicago very soon here.' Right . . . within minutes, the flight was delayed three more hours and there would be no way to get home to North Carolina tonight. Now, I'm on an overnight flight, connecting through yet another city.


'Why not see what it takes to get in American Airlines' lounge?' I thought to myself.


So I took myself across the airport, found the lounge, but also the big price tag, and thought better of it.


My posture must have telegraphed disappointment as I turned away in my pink dress and stepped into the elevator. 'Hey, Sister, I'm so glad I found you - I've been looking for you--so glad you came up to the Admiral's Club! I was hoping you would find me here--of course, you can come in as my guest/family member.' 'Oh-hhhh, yes thank you,' I stammered and quickly fell in step with the stranger, walked back into the club where I could study and write, and sit just a little more comfortably as I wait the seven hours until my flight.


Now, I ask you - 'What did this act of kindness/act of generosity cost this man?' Nothing, except noticing a frustrated woman in a pink dress.

What else? He had to get up from his seat, engage in a few minutes of conversation, and then we laughed.

Then I experienced the benefit of his kindness.


It seems generosity is bound up with kindness. Take a look as Paul wraps his letter to the Philippians, commending them for their generosity toward him:


“I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me.

Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it.

I am not saying this because I am in need,

for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances . . .

Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles.

Moreover, as you Philippians know,

in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only; for even when I was in Thessalonica,

you sent me aid again and again when I was in need.

Not that I am looking for a gift, but I am looking for what may be credited to your account. I have received full payment and even more; I am amply supplied,

now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent.

They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. 

And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

To our God and Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”1


Hmmm... I wonder if the Philippians had access to Paul’s writing to the church at Corinth—did they know what he had taught about sowing and reaping generously? Is that why they had given so generously to him, taking care of his needs as he ministered? Or did it just feel right to them, to take care of the one who had brought them the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Indeed--did they know Paul wrote, "Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop.  You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.”2  


I do not write much about money—that is, unless the Scripture passage warrants it, and the end of this letter to the Philippians certainly does. Paul's gratitude for their financial support of him as their pastor and teacher, and the one who 'became all things to all people so that by any means he might save some'3 has application to us today.


And I am not a religious legalist; if I were, then I would tell you what my religion or denomination requires as the proper amount or percentage that should be given. I am, however, a devoted follower of Jesus, a Bible believer and teacher. Accordingly, in short, here is my disposition toward giving to God, and also what I tell those who ask me, which is more frequent than you might guess.


The Old Testament mandated a ten percent tithe from what was called 'the first fruits' of earnings. There is no such percentage given in the New Testament, however Jesus was quite clear: ‘to whom much is given, much will be required’.4 Your attention? ‘Much’ refers to our time, our talent, and yes, of course, also our treasure. Ken Blanchard and Truett Cathy add ‘touch’ to that—which is brilliant!5


Paul teaches in his letter to the Galatians that we should support those who teach us the Word of God, and there is great reward for those who faithfully give to the work of the Lord. The amount given is not the important part, but faithfulness and generosity of heart are both vital.


“Thank you so kindly” to those who give to this ministry; I am so very grateful. Your giving supports the cost of PastorWoman--the website, cost of distribution and important conferences like this one in August: https://crossexamined.org/what-is-cia/,where I will continue to sharpen my skills in engaging the culture with the truth of Christianity, being able to stand my ground in face-to-face conversations with folks wherever I meet them, always wanting to leave them with God's great love for them.Your (tax­ deductible) giving is what supports the spread of the Gospel in this information­-driven era in which we live. Only in this day and age could the gospel spread in such a manner, going into the hands of people where it is illegal to be a Christian.


Would you consider giving to the work of this ministry--teaching of the Word, leading people to the Lord, inspiring greater relationship with the Father? (see below in blue)


When we remember that all good gifts are from the Father, both our realization and our gratitude compels us to want to give, to love, to touch, to bless, does it not? It was gratitude to Paul and to God that moved the Philippians to action; I believe it was their love for God, and their love for Paul that compelled them to make sure his needs were met, to make sure that the Gospel continued to go forward through Paul.


Our gratitude must cause our hearts to swell with generosity as well, my friends~

"Blessed be Your Name" - great song, great truth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p7BH1PiuCT0


Grace and Peace to you,

Christine

Philippians, #24



-->>To support PastorWoman ministries,

you can mail your tax­ deductible check to PastorWoman Corp. - address below

or Venmo -> @Christine-DiGiacomo-1

or Zelle (QR code below)




1 - Philippians 4.10-19

2 - 2 Corinthians 9.6-7, NLT

3 - 1 Corinthians 9.22

4 - Luke 12.48

5 - The Generosity Factor – Ken Blanchard and S. Truett Cathy, a great little read

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