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Cheerful Givers

But remember this - if you give little, you will get little. A farmer who plants just a few seeds will get only a small crop, but if he plants much, he will reap much. Every one must make up his own mind as to how much he should give. Don't force anyone to give more than he really wants to, for cheerful givers are the ones God prizes. God is able to make it up to you by giving you everything you need and more, so that there will not only be enough for your own needs, but plenty left over to give joyfully to others. It is as the Scriptures say: "The godly man gives generously to the poor. His good deeds will be an honor to him forever." 2 Corinthians 9:6-9 (TLB)

Ada Iris Santiago Vargas, from Puerto Rico, is the youngest of four children. In the rural part of Puerto Rico where they grew up, all types of fruit abounded in the fields of the country estates. Ada's family was poor, but they were viewed by others as rich because their father was the overseer of one of the country estates. He was responsible for the well-being of a dozen families who worked there. Ada remembers how her mother shared their food with the families of the estate community. And her father advanced money to the workers so their children would not go hungry, even though their family was also in need.

As she reflects on the loving, generous spirit of her parents and how they led by example, Ada remains grateful. If her parents, foregoing their own needs, shared what they had, how much more does God, the loving parent, do for us by showing mercy and loving-kindness? Thanks be to God!

Prayer: Generous God, who "upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry," (Psalm 146:7), thank you for your eternal compassion, in Jesus' name. Amen.


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