Motivational Minute - Generosity
Generosity is contagious. During the winter holidays in 2013, one drive-through customer at a Starbucks in Connecticut decided to pay for the order of the person behind her. This started a chain reaction and the next 450 customers paid-it-forward by paying for the drinks of the person next in line.
In her book, “The How of Happiness”, Sonja Lumbrisky observes that acts of kindness, generosity, and compassion are keys to the social connections that are so important to our happiness. Being generous with our time, emotions, and resources helps us perceive others more compassionately. We begin to see the good qualities in people to whom we are kind and generous.
Try it out. There are all kinds of volunteer opportunities around your community where you can make a difference. Watch what happens in you when you give yourself to others.
A good example of the power of generosity comes from the story of Dorcas in Acts chapter 9 in the Bible.
The Scriptures call her, “a certain disciple.” Her testimony starts with her faith – she was a follower of Jesus. Remember, at this time Christianity had not been extended to the gentiles; it was considered a sect of Judaism. So it was most likely that Dorcas was very active in the synagogue. (At this time in history, Jewish followers of Christ continued to attend synagogue and participate in their Jewish faith alongside followers of Judaism.)
The church was established in Joppa by Philip, the Evangelist. It is very likely that Dorcas became a disciple of Christ under his ministry. Sources outside the Bible tell us that the Christian church in Joppa was a center of evangelism and well-organized social service. Dorcas was influenced by both of these forces and came to see her sewing needle as a tool for evangelism.
Dorcas embodies James comment that “pure and undefiled religion” includes taking care of “orphans and widows”. Dorcas faith was an active faith – a faith demonstrated by her deeds. She made clothes for needy people. She providing clothing for so many people that when she died, the Bible said the whole town mourned for her. What a legacy.
Dorcas serves as an example of selfless service for us. Let's follow her example and share our talents and resources with the need in our community.