generosity It's time for another Community Brew post today, hosted by Madison of The Wetherills Say I Do and Rachel of Oh Simple Thoughts! This month's topic is all about generosity. Just like last month, I know that I'm a day late posting this due to my crazy finals schedule these past few days, but I'm super excited for this month's topic, which I think is especially fitting for this time of year.

Christmas time is a very busy time. All the preparing and running around can make you feel more stressed than relaxed. Still, every year, I see something different in the way people act this time of year. They're more generous. Now I'm not saying that people are selfish during the other three seasons, but I see all this gift giving making a positive impact on people's lives.

I've been impacted by someone's generosity very recently, and it got me thinking about a few things, which I'll get to in a moment. First I'd like to share the story (because we all like stories, right?) :)

Yesterday morning was my last final for the semester (yay!). Turns out, I didn't completely study all the right material and my confidence on the test was shattered as I looked at the first page of the test. Needless to say, the test didn't go over as well as I had hoped. A little depressed, I went to the campus bookstore to return my rented books (a.k.a. get rid of the book for that class) and pick up a package that had arrived earlier in the week. When I went back to my room to open it, I discovered that it was from my "secret elf" Charlene of the Great Christmas Exchange! Excitedly I opened the box and smiled from ear to ear when I discovered what she had chosen for me: a beautiful mug from Crystal Faye with my blog name on it, a Kate Spade notepad, a box of green tea, and a sweet Christmas card. I'll be showing photos of these amazing gifts later in the month, don't worry.

Back to the story. I nearly cried of happiness because of the thoughtfulness she had put into the gifts. She discovered what I liked and tailored it to fit me. Her generosity truly made my day!

Someone else gave an amazing gift of generosity over 2000 years ago. God gave us his only son to die for us, the ugly sinners. We weren't deserving of that, but did that matter to God? No. He did it out of his love for us. That's what generosity is. It's selfless giving, modeled after the great gift we were given from God.

So I encourage you to show generosity this season and then continue to do so all year round. If you need some ideas, I've listed a few here:

10 Ways to Be Generous

  1. Buy someone a meal: at the cafe, restaurant, or the person behind you in the drive through.
  2. Volunteer your time
  3. Leave a platter of treats in the lobby of your office, dorm, or apartment building. Extra credit if you include a handwritten note and a list of ingredients (for folks who are plagued with allergies)
  4. Buy an Amazon gift for a random stranger (you can search for wishlists here)
  5. Leave a generous tip for the waiter
  6. Compliment strangers
  7. Tape quarters to parking meters
  8. Sponsor a child in a third world country
  9. Donate your stuff
  10. Offer to help carry groceries for the elderly or moms with young children
What are your thoughts on generosity?