Generous Hearts, Generous Hands
Harvest is a special time in the life of many churches. The fruit and food and flowers in church remind us of the good things God has given to us. We often share a Harvest Supper together to celebrate God’s abundance. We come together in worship to say thank you. And we give, food and money, to extend a loving hand to those in our community and beyond who feel the sharp sting of hunger and loss.
In this short course, we are reading the Book of Ruth. This lovely story is set at Harvest time. The opening verses pull no punches. There is famine and there are refugees in the lawless time of the Judges, We meet Naomi, a widow hollowed out by grief with her two widowed daughters-in-law living with social and economic uncertainty.
The Book of Ruth is not a story of saints untroubled by life. It is a story of real people, with real challenges and the testing of a real faith. But it is also a story of God’s provision and promise. As Christians, our discipleship is lived out in the real world. And because so much of life is caught up with questions of money, earning and spending, borrowing and saving, it’s no surprise that Ruth offers much to learn about generous discipleship.
We will meet Boaz, Ruth’s future husband. He gives generously from the wealth God has given to him. But if generous discipleship is only ever about money it risks being transactional. We give to make a difference and to support our church. Of course, that matters, very much.
But Naomi and Ruth – and Boaz himself – show us a generous discipleship that is transformational. St Paul said, ‘If I give all I possess to the poor … but do not have love, I gain nothing’ (1 Cor 13:3). Generosity is who we are, not just what we give. In fact, generosity is the very heart of God who gave his own Son and gives us all things in Christ.
Each session of this course has a short reflection on the Book of Ruth and a prayer to pray in response. There is also a simple daily action you can take, another step on your journey into generous discipleship.
As you reflect on Generous Hearts and Generous Hands in the Book of Ruth we pray that these reflections inspire and challenge you during the Harvest season to consider the following 3 things;
1. To review your giving to support and grow the life, ministry and mission of your church
2. To join the Parish Giving Scheme, the most efficient and effective way to give – and thank you if you have already joined.
3. To consider leaving a gift in your will to your church, a gift of life to bless the church, today and tomorrow.
In this course
Week 1 - Growing in: Generous Relationships
Week 1 of the Generous Hearts, Generous Hands course.ResourceTotal current bookmarks 0
Week 2 - Growing in: Generous Giving
Week 2 of the Generous Hearts, Generous Hands course.ResourceTotal current bookmarks 0
Week 3 - Growing in Generous Character
Week 3 of the Generous Hearts, Generous Hands course.ResourceTotal current bookmarks 0
Week 4 Leaving a Generous Legacy
Week 4 of the Generous Hearts, Generous Hands course.ResourceTotal current bookmarks 0
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