by Erin Bird
There is a video trend currently happening on YouTube called "The Bad Joke Challenge ." Two people will sit across from each other, telling "bad" jokes (think "Dad" jokes, not "dirty" jokes). The "winner" of the challenge is the one who DOESN'T laugh. In other words, first to laugh loses.
While both contestants do their best to keep their laughs stifled, eventually one of them busts. But it's interesting that as soon as one person laughs, the second person immediately laughs as well.
Because joy is contagious.
We are in a series here on the blog about Giving, walking through 2 Corinthians 9:6-15. Last week, as we looked at verse 6, we saw there is a return to our giving . This week we move on to verse 7, and we discover that giving should contain joy.
When someone gives you a gift, whether for your birthday, or at Christmas, or just because, you feel honored. But if they gave the gift to you with a glum face, sulking about the amount of money they spent, you wouldn't feel very honored, would you?
I think this is why God wrote through the Apostle Paul...
"Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." (2 Corinthians 9:7)
Just like you don't want a gift given reluctantly, God doesn't want you giving out of duty or with a bad attitude. Your giving is part of your worship of what God has done for you through Jesus. He wants you to give with joy.
But something else happens when you give with joy than just the actual giving. Your joy will be contagious. It will help others to give. It will help others be in awe of God. And it will help others have joy as well.
So give. Give generously. Give sacrificially. But do it joyfully. Because you might just give joy to someone else.
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