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10 ways to live generously

As a follower of Jesus, you are not your first priority. Philippians 2:3 calls us to, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” Instead, we are to follow the example of Jesus “who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:6-7).

 But what does that look like? How can we day in and day out put others first?

10 Ways to Put Others First Today

1. Be generous.

We serve a generous God. We can be assured that our Heavenly Father will take care of our needs so we can eagerly seek to meet the needs of others (Luke 12:22-34).  Take every opportunity to tip well and give generously to others.

2.  Speak kindly.

Harsh words display a lack of respect and a neglect for feelings of others. Proverbs 16:24 says, “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” Choose to encourage and build others up with your words.

3. Go last.

When questioned by his disciples who was the greatest Jesus overturned natural inclination and declared, “If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.” (Mark 9:35) Deem others more important and volunteer to go last.

4. Pursue purity.

Pursuing purity in your actions, speech, and dress serves your brothers and sisters in Christ. As we consider others better than ourselves, we’ll conduct ourselves in a manner that can keep others from sin. We’ll even be willing to limit our own freedoms to encourage their faith, as Paul demonstrates in 1 Corinthians 8:12-13.

5. Stop complaining.

Complaining displays an attitude of selfishness and pride. Our complaints are really demands for personal rights and preferences. Philippians 2:14-15 not only encourages us not to grumble and complain but assures us that such behavior will allow us to “shine like stars in a wicked and depraved generation.”

6.  Pray for others.

Our prayer lives often reveal what we really care about. Are we appealing to God on behalf of others, asking him to bless them abundantly? Or, are we only seeking the Lord’s blessing on our own lives? Obey Matthew 5:44 and pray for God’s blessing on both your friends and enemies today.

7. Be honest.

Although confrontation may be uncomfortable, it is a vital way we can serve one another. Paul instructs us, “if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness.” (Galatians 6:18)

8. Submit to authority.

In the same way that Christ humbled himself, we can choose to humble ourselves under our earthly authorities and honor them through our obedience. (Titus 3:1)

9. Forgive easily. 

Bitterness, grudges, and unforgiveness proceed from a desire to keep someone subordinate to us. Humble yourself and forgive them and you have been forgiven by God. (Ephesians 4:32)

10. Thank God. 

All of our gifts, talents, and abilities come from God. He is the giver of every good gift (James 1:17). As we acknowledge that everything we are and all that we have ultimately belongs to him, we will readily serve and give to others in obedience to Him.

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