Everyone should give whatever they have decided in their heart. They shouldn’t give with hesitation or because of pressure. God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Corinthians 9:7 CEB)

William and Wanda were two of the most frugal people I’ve ever known. Decades into retirement, they fed their family and many others in our small town from the huge garden that William tended along the gravel driveway between the road and their house. William loved to collect aluminum cans to sell to the local recycling center and cash register receipts from a local grocer who would donate 1 percent back to their church. Wanda drove a twenty-year-old Buick and believed rinsing and reusing plastic storage bags and aluminum foil was sensible stewardship. They lived a simple life where nothing was wasted.

More importantly, William and Wanda loved Jesus, and they loved serving others. They volunteered countless hours in the church and in the community and believed that one of the best ways they could love God was by loving other people. They constantly spoke of God’s grace and of their gratitude for Jesus.

I will never forget the day Wanda stood up to speak in one of our campaign meetings. She said, “You know how thankful we are for Jesus, and we love this church and the impact we are making in this community. We are going to give $1,000 … a month … for this campaign.” I nearly fell out of my chair. If she had said $1,000 total, I would have been surprised, but $36,000? What in the world were they thinking? Maybe Wanda and William were thinking about 2 Corinthians 9. They understood that God’s grace in their lives provided them an opportunity to be generous. In turn their generosity would stir others to give with thanksgiving to God. And maybe that would lead more people to understand God’s grace and the joy of being generous.

~Richard L. Rogers


Have you ever done something truly sacrificial? Have you ever chosen to be extravagantly generous? What motivated you to do it? How did that decision shape who you are today? How has someone else’s extravagant generosity impacted your life?


In your journal, make a list of five practical ways you can create less waste and practice “sensible stewardship” like William and Wanda. Implement at least one of these in your daily or weekly routine.

From A Generous Life: 28 Days of Devotion. Copyright © 2019 Abingdon Press. All rights reserved.

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