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Pastor Todd recently preached on the second part of a new series on generosity. We found it to be a great conversation starter and topic we’ve also been focusing on as a family as we start the Ramadan and Easter season.
Generosity is a common value in both Christianity and Islam, but the concept of it in the spiritual look of it goes far deeper than we see practiced in general. People give for a variety of reasons, sympathy for the poor, taking part in a just cause; or in order to bring closer God’s Grace. Unfortunately, some people also give for selfish reasons; but you can imagine where that eventually lands those people.
When we think of giving it almost always falls on the subject of money. Granted it’s a subject that lands pretty high on the list of people’s needs. However there are numerous needs that people that people have, but end up going without. How many people in the previous year suffered in their physical and mental health, were separated from family, or just needed to be given some encouragement.
The Reasons We Give: Generosity and Almsgiving.
In drafting this post, I hit on something that seems to get lost, until Ramadan and Easter time that brings it back into focus for a time. Why giving is important. Besides what giving does for the person that’s given to, but what does it do for the giver. As we are an interfaith family we have plenty of traditions and examples to draw from.
Islam also has a strong connection with the value of generosity this time of year during the month of Ramadan. As you’ll find Christians during the holy month of Lent putting forth their best foot towards acts of charity, likewise during Ramadan Muslims rush to the needs of their surrounding communities. After all, faith isn’t just about the relationship between yourself and God; but also with God’s creation as well. With this in mind, generosity and giving extends beyond mere money and into stewardship, or khalifa.
How we are with our family, neighbors and community member – even in the natural world we interact with everyday. We can bring life and light into our home through the generosity we spread amongst ourselves and others in our community. One of the best parts about that is our children pick up on it quicker than we realize. It’s in doing, and allowing them to take part that cements those habits of generosity in their developing faith.