For one, buying ALL THE PRESENTS means spending MORE OF THE MONEY. And for someone who already has an issue spending unnecessarily, it’s tough to justify spending any money on something that isn’t food or shelter when I’ve issued myself a moratorium.
For two, ALL THE HOLIDAYS means craziness where I work, plus parties means people, and for this introvert, people all day and people all night means ALL THE CRANKY. I like to come home to quiet, not to plans. And so I have found myself wanting to be stingy with my time and my home.
A few years ago I was going through a really rough situation and I remember telling Jesus, “This is going to kill me.” And then the Holy Spirit whispered, “But isn’t that the point? That you die to self? So shouldn’t this kill you?”
I still don’t have an answer for that particular situation, but it’s been a question I’ve turned over in my head ever since. What does dying to myself look like and feel like? When am I martyring myself as opposed to the Spirit extracting what’s death in me?
This Christmas, this year, I want to fight valiantly for generosity, even where it would not be my first choice. Just as Jesus came to us as a child, so I want to go to Him as a child in faith. It may well kill me, but that’s the redemptive work of Christ: teaching us to die to self that we may rise with Him.
A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed. • Proverbs 11:25
In what areas is it difficult for you to be generous? Are there images or words that remind you to fight to give cheerfully?