Generosity: the virtue of giving without expecting anything in return… involving time, money, talents, availability and a plain ol’ willingness.
I asked if I could have her and her family over for dinner. She said, “What can I bring, what can I do, how can I help?” I replied, “Nothing, notta, zilch. How ‘bout I give you that much needed break you need.” She smiled and said thank you.
I sent a text that read, “When can your boys come over? My boys would love to have little buddies to hang with.” She replied, “Sounds great! Also, let’s plan a time when I can take your boys.” I replied, “OR…. how about you don’t take my boys at all and just allow me to help you out when I know this is a busy season for you.” She texted a smile and wrote thank you.
Generosity is like a wave.
One fold of water produces a ripple that pays it forward. In turn, that movement produces continuing forward motion. A wave doesn’t turn around trying to convince the wave behind it to stop moving forward. It accepts the natural flow of the current, and by agreeing to collaborate, it contributes to the collective movement by concentrating it’s own efforts on continuing the momentum forward.
The entire focus of the ocean is motion, which waves create. This is how they roll.
I reached the front of the Starbucks line and realized I had left my phone in the car (I pay with my app). Suddenly this lady behind me says, “Well that works out perfectly because I was just about to buy your coffee and now you can’t refuse.” I laughed and instantly began sputtering, “No no no, you don’t have to do that,” but I caught myself. I stopped. I thought about what was happening. And I held back from doing the natural default “cultural thing” and instead, I smiled and said thank you.
Generosity is about giving without strings attached, but it’s also about accepting generosity without strings attached.
The entire focus of generosity is motion. Be someone who is continuously propelling generosity forward. May it be “how you roll.”
”And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God.” Hebrews 13:16
Christmas idea: instead of being annoyed that you can’t find a parking spot while Christmas shopping at the mall, take the time to plug someone’s meter, or leave a note on someone’s window, or give up a spot for someone else. See moments of annoyance as opportunities for generosity.
Christmas prayer: Thank you, Lord, that Your word is wise and true. Awaken my heart to the truth that it’s more blessed to give than to receive. May my life be rich in good works. May my eyes see opportunities to be generous and ready to share. May the spirit of generosity come alive in my soul and may I willingly extend my time, talent, money and love to those who need it. May this be the “roll” I play this holiday season, and please use my life to create waves of generosity. Amen.