GenerousChurch

12 Roses and a Teddy Bear…for the Neighbor

by GenerousChurch  |  February 12, 2013

Valentine’s Day is less than 48 hours away.  Do you have plans?

Valentine’s Day has become one of the major spending holidays in the U.S.  According to one online article, approximately $18 billion is spent on this holiday (including $367 million on pets).  That’s a lot of flowers and teddy bears. 

Chances are high that you have spent some hard-earned cash on this day.  Valentine’s Day is a formidable consumer holiday.  But, imagine what would happen if chunks of that money started going toward a greater cause .

Generosity Day

Sasha Dichter has begun a movement to rebrand Valentine’s Day.  Since 2008, Valentine’s Day has also been celebrated as Generosity Day – a day to say “yes” to all requests for generosity.  So, if a stranger asks for a meal, the answer would be “yes.”  If a homeless man asks for change, the answer is “yes.”  If a friend asks for a favor, the answer is “yes.”

Ironically, about 2000 years ago, another man called for the same type of generous living.  He said,

 

Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.

If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you?  Even ‘sinners’ lend to ‘sinners,’ expecting to be repaid in full.  But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.  (Luke 6:30-35)

Jesus not only called for His followers to live generously one day a year, but He called us to day-to-day lifestyle generosity.

"What if..."

What if…Valentine’s Day became a reminder of living according to the ways of Jesus?

What if…all Christians started using Valentine’s Day as a way to actively love their neighbors as themselves?

What if…you took your neighbor a dozen roses and a teddy bear?  (Just kidding.  That would be weird.)  But, seriously, what if our churches decided to use this day each year to demonstrate the love of God in tangible ways to their local communities?

Imagine how far $18 billion dollars (or even $367 million dollars) could go in sharing the love of God.  Beyond that, imagine how far it could go in helping us to better walk in the ways of Jesus.

_______________________

What are your plans for giving generously this Thursday?  Let us know in the comments below.

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This is a great idea! I like Valentine's Day especially since I'm a mom because it offers a reason to do something special for my children and husband. This year I've been thinking of incorporating giving into Valentine's Day by giving my children some money to spend in the World Vision catalog to share with others. My pastor does this with his kids at Christmas and I think it's a great idea. This "rebranding" idea for Valentine's Day goes right along with that idea. Thanks for posting!
Becky
February 13, 2013 - 10:03:39 AM
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Thanks, Becky! That's a great way to teach your children about generously loving others. Thanks for sharing the idea!
John (from GenerousChurch)
February 13, 2013 - 10:13:26 AM
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