By Andrea Merrigan, Blogger of the Month for May
What do you think of when you hear the word generosity? Generosity, according to Merriam-Webster, is: “the quality of being kind, understanding, and not selfish: the quality of being generous; especially: willingness to give money and other valuable things to others.”
It is amazing how tragedy brings out generosity in people. I have witnessed this happen in the last couple of weeks. The town I live in has come together and showed a family extreme generosity in their time of need.
Did you hear about Allie, the 17-year-old who was killed in Salina? She was in the wrong place at the wrong time when a group of young men began shooting at the vehicle she was in with her boyfriend. It was a case of mistaken identity. The group of boys thought it was someone else. Allie took a bullet to the head, and her life ended in a moment. Our community was shocked and devastated to hear of her death. Her friends at school, through their sadness and grief, took to the streets the next evening to collect money for her family. After two evenings, they raised $39,000 for Allie’s family. What a great act of generosity for her family!
Americans are great in times of tragedy, coming together and generously giving to those who have suffered. Think back to events that have brought Americans together: Oklahoma City bombing, Boston Marathon, school shootings, 9/11, and other tragedies that have happened in the U.S.
I find the American spirit we have in times of tragedy is amazing and something I love about this country. But I challenge you to show generosity in times when there has not been a tragic event. It is in those times that we need to step out and be generous to those facing quiet battles, hard times, and tough situations.
You never know how a small gesture to a friend or stranger can impact that person’s life. The last few months I have really tried to slow down while I’m out running errands. Observe people I pass by, listen for that small voice in my head, or that feeling in my gut. Those times that I can see or sense that someone is not having a great day or is down on their luck, that is the moment to do something quietly for that stranger.
Showing generosity does not have to involve giving money. It can be a simple smile and hello, mowing the lawn for an elderly neighbor or single mom, thanking a service member (military, firefighter, police officer), volunteering your time at a local non-profit, and more! There are so many people we cross paths with every day, and it is the small things that have an amazing impact on lives.
I love watching Ted Talks, so I had to share this one that is about being generous in the small things. Don’t wait until your life is perfect to be generous; look for small things every day that can impact a person’s life!
As you go through the next week, look for opportunities to be generous to those around you. I challenge you to do at least one generous thing for someone this week. Take a little time to bless someone!
Andrea enjoys life as a military wife and spends her days working in the insurance field. In her free time she blogs at A Modern Hippie. She started blogging soon after she got married to her hubby 12 years ago. She blogs about eating real food, living naturally & chemical free, and their struggles with pregnancy loss and infertility. Her Etsy store and creating her own line of spices also keeps her busy. You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram.