Controversial Generosity

My wonderful roommate, Marianne, & I at the Child Ambassador's Conference

I just spent a fabulous weekend at a conference for World Vision Child Ambassadors (of which I am one). We are volunteers who aim to talk to others about World Vision’s child sponsorship program.

It was a wonderful weekend of refreshment and encouragement for me in my ministry of finding sponsors to change the life of children in need.

  • We worshipped together
  • We watched some incredibly touching videos
  • We heard from amazingly inspirational speakers like Max Lucado & Marilee Pierce Dunker (daughter of World Vision founder Bob Pierce)
  • We learned more about the history of World Vision (started in 1950) and the nuances of how some of the different programs work
  • We got down to some nitty-gritty statistics and logistics (half of the world’s population – 3 billion people – live on less than $2 a day)
  • We got some great new ideas and set some goals
  • We were able to meet and bond with other Child Ambassadors from around the country

More of what I heard and learned this weekend may come out in some future posts, but one of the highlights for me was what Max Lucado spoke to us about. I have heard him speak numerous other times, but this time, he told us that he had taken what he was going to speak about and chucked it out the window, feeling that the Holy Spirit was leading him to share with us a message that he’d be sharing with his church in the near future. It was essentially a sneak peak of a brand new sermon from Max Lucado.

“Un-Scrooge Your Heart”

We all struggle with fighting off the threat of stinginess from taking over. “We ought to give… but don’t give too much.” “Serve others with our time, but we don’t really have that much time.” “Forgive, but not all at once”…

But our God is controversially generous. He has fun doing good. He has never been about stinginess or holding back or giving simply what is sufficient. (See Romans 2:4, 1 Timothy 1:14, 2 Corinthians 9:15, 1 John 3:1, James 1:5, Psalm 107:9, Psalm 23, Luke 6:35…)

God lavishes generous amounts of grace on us every day of our lives. And “grace is the seed out of which the tree of generosity grows.” It only makes sense that since we have received so much grace and generosity, we must bubble over to others. We must give because we first received. We must heed the call to live a life of controversial generosity.

That is a taste of what he talked about. And then, at the end, Max asked us:

How long has it been since you gave a gift that was controversial? (of stuff, money, time, etc)

Does this convict anybody else like it convicts me? I’m not even sure I can think of one good example, sadly.

How long has it been since you gave a gift that was controversial?

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2 thoughts on “Controversial Generosity

  1. This is great insight, Karen! I’m so glad that you got so much refreshment & encouragement from the experience. I can think of 1 experience last year in which Jeremy & I gave controversially & actually recieved a hard time from our family about it, but in the end we recieved the biggest blessing out of that sacrifice than we could’ve ever imagined. When we give out of our great love for Him, He’s always faithful to bless us in return 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks so much friend for sharing your comment! That is encouraging to hear how much of a blessing it was for you all, despite any “controversy” it raised!

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