Monday, June 22, 2015

Abraham's Generosity

“Let there be no strife between you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are kinsmen. Is not the whole land at your disposal? Please separate from me. If you prefer the left, I will go to the right; if you prefer the right, I will go to the left.” Gen 13: 8-9

How easy it could have been for Abraham to struggle mightily with Lot about land and property. That he chose, for the sake of a lasting peace, to offer Lot whatever land he wanted was evidence to God and us of his goodness. How powerful it is to read about someone who thinks, not first of his own power and prestige, but of the common good, and because of Abraham's generosity, after Lot has taken what appears to be the richer and more fertile land, God promises Abraham that his descendants will be more numerous than all the particles of dust all over the land.

Generosity is its own reward. When we have the good sense and grace to think more of others than ourselves, we become peacemakers and justice doers. More important, we offer others an example of God's love for all of us. How clear it is, when we gaze upon the gift of creation that all is gift. Abraham knew this and honored God by offering Lot his choice of land. When we remember his witness and live it ourselves, the world is a different place because God's generosity shines through us.

Today, be unconditionally generous with someone who does not deserve it.

What tempts you to be stingy?

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