I recently read about a person who loaned her car to some friends while she was out of town on a business trip. Some weeks later she received a very unexpected gift in the mail - a speeding ticket. The ticket was mailed as the result of a "red light camera" and the photo clearly showed her license plate number going through the intersection. She tried to remember driving through that intersection but could not ever remembering being there. Then she checked the date - it was the week her friends had borrowed the car from her. What would you do?
This person did something I am not sure I would have even thought of doing. She paid the ticket and never mentioned it to her friends. What she knew was that for her friends this would have been a real financial burden - they were living on a very limited budget. She also knew that they would never deliberately run a red light. So she simply acted out of a generous heart.
Sometimes I kid myself and say that money does not matter to me. I almost pride myself on living a simple lifestyle with no debt. But sometimes it becomes clear to me that there are moments when I love money too much. I am not proud of this but I know that it is true.
A generous heart finds ways to protect, to show respect, to give quietly to others in need. I truly want that kind of heart.
My old Grandpa was as generous as they come. Once his old friend died and did not have any teeth - my old Grandpa gave him his teeth so he would not look so bad in the casket. That's real generosity.
One of my Profs in college, a man with two PhD.'s, a brilliant mind, who taught hundreds of students every semester, took the time to come to my wedding and to buy Linda and I a gift. I still remember the gift - a very nice teapot. That act of generosity took place almost 37 years ago and it still blesses my life. I recently saw him again and my heart was so full to see this dear old man, now well into his 80's, still brimming over with love. When that old teapot would whistle I would think of his generous heart.
Paul said, "God loves a cheerful giver." I do too. And so do you.
Be generous - I am determined to be more generous than ever.
Just thinking, Steve