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40acts Halfway Point: Day-to-Day Generosity

person Fiona Mearns
3 min

It started on the first day of March – over 100,000 people lined up ready on the 40acts starting line. Armed with a pen and two pieces of paper, they scribbled down what might be holding them back from living a generous life on one sheet and on the other everything they had to give away—time, skills, resources. Then came the crunch: rip up the first list; pray over the second.

The possibilities, opportunities and choices for generosity that open up in our daily lives are there to be seized and the 40acts community are grabbing hold of them in unexpected and joyfully generous ways.

Take the guy who stopped to help a couple unstick their car from a muddy rut and tell them about 40acts at the same time. They drove off promising to pass it on.

Then there’s the elderly lady who committed to visiting those local to her who were ‘prisoners’ in their own homes. She saw the need and acted on it.

Or the Mum who bought a spare pack of nappies in the wrong size then on stopping to speak to a Big Issue seller discovered the woman needed that very size for her own child. Perfect fit.

These are a small sample of the kinds of day-to-day generosity that is a feature of 40acts; generosity that keeps going each and every day; that starts the day with an open heart, open mind and open hands to tackle whatever comes across its path.

“I was driving to work when something ‘nudged’ me to stop and offer a lift to the person I passed at the bus stop. It’s not something I’d do as a rule but it became clear during the journey that while they appreciated the lift, they also really needed someone to talk to. I’m so glad I didn’t drive on by.”

Even when fatigue sets in, God is ready to stretch the little generosity we have that little bit further:

“Today I was tired and not feeling myself, I glanced at the ‘Listen’ challenge and subconsciously told myself it was OK to ignore this one. Then today someone came into the church and asked for prayer; he told me all he really wanted was for someone to listen. I sat with him for an hour and a half. He and I felt truly blessed. Sometimes God hands us opportunities when we are least up for it.”

So now we’ve reached the half-way point. Mathematics would say that’s 2million generous actions but we know that God loves multiplication so we’re letting our imaginations run riot.

Want to join us on the journey? It doesn’t matter if you’re new to it or haven’t had time to get involved so far, there’s still 20 more days to go: plenty of time for more contagious generosity and, like the workers in the field, you’re equally welcome whatever time you arrive. Just click here to sign up to receive the daily reflections by email along with the green, yellow and red challenges or visit our Facebook page to see all the challenges so far.

So whatever might be stopping you, write it down then rip it up – there’s a lot more on the list that God has in store for you and if you’re not sure what you have to give consider Jesus words to his disciples, "Freely you have received; freely give.” Matthew 10: 8 (NIV)