18 - Generosity
Generosity is the willingness to give of yourself, such as time or resources, to help another while expecting nothing in return. It is a selfless act, and sometimes even sacrificial, for the benefit of others. It could be for a specific person or an organization or event needing volunteers, such as a local church or a soup kitchen. Optimize generosity in whatever means you can. There are many different methods and opportunities to be generous.
Ways to be Generous:
- With your time. Your time is one of your most precious assets. It is a generous gift to share your time with others, especially when they have a need. If you live an organized life, you can find ways to share your time, even if it involves rearranging your schedule or asking support staff for additional help.
- With your money. Loaning, gifting, or donating money is the most obvious source of generosity. If possible, offer it as a free gift with no expectations in return. You will be rewarded at some point for your kindness. As you are selfless, God will always find a way to respond generously in return, although you should not expect this. If it is an agreed-upon loan, be gentle and sincere in the terms, always understanding there may be a chance you will never see this money again. Only provide what you are willing and comfortable never to see again. In a sense, it is also a "gift." Let go of any tension or connection to the money once you release it. And if it is returned, consider it a blessing. It is also Biblical to tithe 10% of the first fruits of your income. Be generous, and do not hesitate to offer more if you are financially able. You can never outgive God!
- With your talents. You have been blessed with your own unique talents and abilities. Use these gifts to bless and help someone else any time you can. Your gifts are meant to be shared with others. Generously share your knowledge and experience when an occasion arises. Or take initiative and seek out an opportunity. Find a need and meet it.
- With your love. Share your love with others. Be generous with this free yet precious gift. You have the ability to show compassion to others and empathize with their situation. This gift is more valuable than any amount of money. Love will sustain their hearts and let them know they are not alone. It will provide them with strength, hope, and possibly some security.
- With your patience. When someone is hurting, they may be irrational and, more than likely, emotional. They may say or do things that are illogical and perhaps even hurtful. Be patient with them, understand their stress and confusion, and show them grace. Or, if you are volunteering in a bigger organization or event, be patient if it isn’t running as smoothly as you’d like it to. It may be run by others who are also out of their element, volunteering their time and doing their best. Be patient and even flexible, and enjoy the process and comradery with other well-intentioned people.
- With your acceptance. Accept where people are in their life journey and who they are. When someone else is hurting, or in need, they are potentially feeling down about their situation and how they arrived there. Accept them as they are and allow them to be themselves as they work through the situation that caused the need. Everyone likes and needs acceptance. Or perhaps it is a business or an organization in need. Also, accept them with their need or desire for help to improve their circumstances or as they continue to provide for or serve others.
- With your forgiveness. If warranted, freely extend or accept forgiveness as appropriate. It is a gift that provides freedom from hurt feelings and allows you to move forward peacefully. Be generous with forgiveness, especially when it is the right thing to do.
- With your encouragement. Possibly all that is needed is encouragement. Offer kind and supportive words or actions to the benefit of the recipient. Find the most critical area of need, focus on love and support, and affirm them. Encourage with any available means, perhaps by sharing advice, hope, and ideas or just listening.
Benefits of Being Generous:
- Positive effects on health
- Building relationships
- Positive energy
- Help others fill a need
- Builds your character
- It is obedient to the LORD’s command
- It’s infectious
“When we practice generosity and forgiveness, we reflect the image of God.” Mac Canoza
“Give more than you take, and you’ll get more than you give.” Sahil Lavingia
“That’s what I consider true generosity: You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing.” Simone de Beauvoir
“You give a little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.” Kahil Gibran
“Optimize your generosity. No one on their deathbed has ever regretted giving too much away.”
“The highest status people in human history are those that asked for nothing and gave everything.”
What are your thoughts about this quality?
Who will you share this with?