A Beautiful Thing - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas 
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Have you been blessed by one of these "Beautiful Thing" devotionals across these five weeks?  Have you been touched by one of the songs or inspired by one of the sermons?  How has God challenged you as you’ve been praying about your involvement in the campaign?  You’ve been reading these daily devotionals -- and now it’s YOUR turn!  In this week’s sermon, Pastor Tom wants to read as many notes as time will allow.  Write him at tom@hbcaustin.org.
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Hillcrest Baptist Church

Day 1 Devotional (Week 5)
Monday, May 9, 2011

"You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God." -- 2 Corinthians 9:11

Generosity encompasses so many things.  You can be generous in giving your money, time, love, support, and your prayers.  In other words, as we read in 2 Corinthians 9:11, we'll be made "rich in every way" so we can be "generous on every occasion."  I have been the recipient of all of these during my lifetime, and it was especially needed when I was a young, single mother raising my five-year-old daughter.  I lost my father, my job, and had major surgery within a year and a half after buying my own home.  During this time, my Christian friends and family gave me comfort through my grief and care through my recovery.  Just as my savings ran out, God provided a job for me.

As I was going through this, one night I let my Bible fall open, and I started reading Habakkuk 3:17-19:  "Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines... yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.  The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights."  God was saying to me that, no matter what was happening, He would be there with me and provide for me.  That's God's generosity.

Recently, my first grandchild was born in China, and I needed to go there.  A generous Christian friend helped me get there by giving me frequent flyer miles.  It is a gift I will always remember and can never repay, but I know God put this friend in my life to provide this.

I give thanks to God for providing all of the generosity I have been given.  I want to return my small portion in our efforts to improve the church facilities.

Lord, help us to remember that by being generous to others and to our church, we are honoring You and giving thanks to You for your many gifts to us, including the most generous gift of all, your Son who died for us.  In His name I pray, Amen.

Prepared by Becky Bolling

To prepare spiritually during our “A Beautiful Thing” campaign, you will receive a devotional written by our own members every Monday through Saturday for five weeks. To opt out of these daily devotionals, click here. To read the announcements from the “ABT Weekly Update,” click here.