Thinking this morning about generosity. Love. Grace.
I picked up Miroslav Volf’s Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace again this morning (I’m terrible at finishing books the last several years!) and read a few pages while waiting to photograph the hot air balloons that never appeared.
Later, while throwing together some breakfast, it struck me that in the list of love’s attributes in the so-called love chapter, nowhere does it say “love is generous.” Now I’m sitting at the picnic table with leftover pasta and a slice of rhubarb pie, trying to get the thoughts on paper.
It doesn’t say “love is generous,” but it does say that love does not seek its own.
Are there translations that interpret that as “Love is generous”?
If so, the translation falls short.
But before I get off on a new line of thought I don’t have time to examine at the moment, I’ll get back to where I was.
When you get down to it, 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a is a list of practical ways love is expressed… or expresses itself.
Our love is imperfect. And how could anyone ever love perfectly apart from God; He is perfect love? We don’t love perfectly because we haven’t been made perfect in love. We fear. (1 John 4:18).
We get distracted by self because we’re afraid we won’t get what we want, or need.
Just as pure, perfect love is not possible apart from God, true generosity is not possible apart from grace. Even the most selfish of men can appear generous. By giving from his excess. By giving to look good to others, to feel good about himself. By giving to reap tax benefits. To obligate the recipient.
There are many reasons to “give.”
But giving, with grace, expects nothing for itself. It is love.
Generosity, love, grace, in their purest forms, cannot be separated.
That’s what I’m thinking about this morning…