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How Can I Become a More Generous Person?

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giving Photo © U.S. Navy Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Chantel M. Clayton
Question: How Can I Become a More Generous Person?

People whose lifestyles are marked by generosity become miraculous forces for good in the world, inviting God’s love to flow through them and into the lives of other people to change them for the better. You can become one of those people!

Yes, giving your resources (such as time, money, and energy) involves making sacrifices. But if you focus beyond the sacrifices to the miraculous results your generosity can accomplish, you can grow into a generous person with God’s help.

Answer: Here are five steps you can take to become a more generous person:
  1. Let your gratitude lead to generosity. As you experience God’s generosity to you, you can be inspired to become more generous to others. Remember that God owns everything, and that he has made it possible for you to acquire all you have. Make an inventory list of your blessings, taking a few minutes to write down everything you can think of for which you’re grateful (from your friends and family members to the food you eat and the air you breathe). Then study the list to realize how much you have, and tell God how thankful you are for it all. In gratitude, let your response be generous giving.
  2. Decide to serve a cause that’s greater than your own life: making the world a better place. Ask God to give you the desire to reach out to other people rather than resenting the time, energy, money, and inconveniences that can be involved. Pray for God to open your eyes to those around you whom he wants you to serve and help you develop the compassion you need to reach out them as he hopes you will. Ask God to help you change specific selfish thought and behavior patterns in your life so you can give willingly and cheerfully.
  3. Trust God to enable you to help other people regardless of your current circumstances. If you don’t have much money, you could give some of your time. If you possess a special talent, consider how to use it to contribute to others. God will always make a way for you to give.
  4. Incorporate service into your lifestyle. Make it a habit to pray for God to show you how he wants you to help others. Look for opportunities to help meet needs every day. Be creative about ways to fit more service into your life, such as by transforming some of your daily activities into acts of service or using money you would have spent to buy something for yourself to buy a gift for someone else instead.
  5. Look beyond just those you love. Don’t limit your generosity only to the people you know and love. Also be willing to reach out to strangers, people who make you uncomfortable, and those who can’t reciprocate. Challenge yourself to remember that, if you believe God has made every human being on the planet in his image, you need to reach out to all the people you encounter with his love. When you do, miracles may happen in the lives of the people you help, and in your own life, as well.
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