“Putting Off” Discontentment And “Putting On” Generosity

This past Sunday, Pastor Chris went through the passage in scripture, found in Ephesians, that underpins a practice we call “Put Off / Put On.” The practice recognizes that when we have an unhealthy behavior it is not enough to simply stop or “put off” that behavior. Instead, it’s equally important for us to replace them or “put on” healthy behaviors that are the result of God’s truth. (We have a helpful worksheet you can work through below in regards to “Put Off/Put On”)

In one example, Pastor Chris said if someone has an idol of work and achievement, it probably isn’t enough for the person to simply work less – instead, the person might need to refuse the next promotion! Radical stuff. He calls this undermining the lie – I might go further and call it slaying the idol.

I believe this is why God introduces generosity and giving. I want to tell you a quick story:

The year would have been 2010 because my daughter, Kaylee, was about 18 months old. We had just come back from grocery shopping and I prepared a small bowl of grapes for her to snack on.

She loved grapes and was inhaling them when I playfully asked her for a piece. Seeing what was in front of her, she decided that she didn’t have enough and refused to give me half a grape. 

As a loving father who wants the best for her, I used the moment as a parenting opportunity and made her share a grape with me – by taking it all away.

It wasn’t pretty (nor quiet)…

After the waterworks ended and she had calmed down from her first experience of learning the act of giving and sharing, even if not the whole principle, I went to the fridge and got a lot more grapes out for all of us to eat together and all was well again with the world. Kaylee is now 14 and I’m happy to say that she is generally great at sharing!

It’s an experience that has stayed with me all these years because I learned a lot more than my daughter that day. I realized that Kaylee’s experience with grapes mirrors a lot our relationship with God and giving – we forget that God owns the entire universe and that He asks us to give and be generous for our sake – because He loves us and wants us to live freely.

This is obviously easier said than done – we recognize that and we don’t want you to do it alone. We have a brand new, safe environment to explore this topic called the Journey of Generosity (JOG). It takes place over two half-days (Friday afternoon/evening and Saturday morning) and is one of my favorite resources on stewardship. The unique thing about it is it’s an environment in which nobody is allowed to solicit, fundraise or even advocate for a particular cause.

To sign up or find out more information, click here or email me at vinny@hobokengrace.com.

To learn more on working through “Put Off/Put On” check out this document here.

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