"In a generous spirit pay homage to the Lord, be not sparing of freewill gifts. With each contribution show a cheerful countenance, and pay your tithes in a spirit of joy. Give to the Most High as he has given to you, generously, according to your means."
Well, THAT sure doesn't need much commentary from me, does it? In a reflection on this reading, Fr. Dan Talafous, in Give Us This Day, hits the nail on the head when he said that if we cannot give cheerfully, with kindness, we needn't bother. As Lent sneaks up on us, let's think about how to honor the "giving alms" part of our Lenten observances. If we give to be seen giving, if we give announcing our sacrifice to assembled company, if we give just enough to satisfy a requirement, we may as well skip it. That is not the kind of giving God wants at all. Rather, God desires that we give generously, cheerfully, compassionately and without judgment...just as we have been generously gifted by God. Love, heidi