What’s That Look Like?
In my previous post, I discussed the outrageously generous nature of God, and wondered “out loud” what that looks like for you and for me. While I continue to wrestle with this notion in prayer, let me share a few practical applications of what outrageous generosity might look like. One caveat before I begin: there is a HUGE difference between helping and enabling. I believe Christ followers are called to help others always, but not to enable others at any time. Discerning the difference is something that must be done on an individual cases basis, and I am NOT tackling that subject in this post. Perhaps some other time.
That’s just Who I Am.
Oh yeah, one other caveat: much of what I will describe here honestly doesn’t seem that outrageous to me as someone who has been following Christ for three decades now. To the world, however, it does seem outrageously generous. I can just see God saying the same thing about His outrageous generosity…”that’s just Who I Am.”
Outrageous generosity includes:
Tipping a food service worker way more than 20%. I have actually had a server come running out of the restaurant to thank me for tipping in that manner. With tears of joy on her cheeks, she was genuinely grateful and touched by that act of outrageous generosity. Now, I don’t do that all the time, but more often than not, my tips are above the 20% mark.
Giving my time “on the spur of the moment.” I am not adverse at all to a phone call asking for my assistance with something, dropping whatever else I am doing and heading out. I don’t always ask folks to schedule an appointment with me, I just go. I guess I figure if someone is calling for my assistance, they must be desperate, so I’d better see if goofy ole Scott can help them out.
Smiling and engaging the cashier in a genuine conversation while they are working with me. I always look for their name tags, so I can call them by name, and take them in conversation beyond the “how you doing’?” point. Yeah, it is usually surface level conversation about the weather, or how much longer they have on that shift, but I may comment on the products I am purchasing, especially if that stuff is for a church or life group related event, so I can let them know that Jesus is important in my life, while letting them know that they are important in my life, too. Not just as a cashier, but as a human being. It’s a bonus conversation, if get them to laugh. I do accomplish that goal quite often. Maybe it’s my face for radio that gets ‘em. I dunno.
Loving on people who have nothing to offer in return. My Dad is a resident of a skilled nursing facility. As a regular visitor there, I have come to know many of the staff members and residents. A simple smile, a pat on the shoulder, and a kind word go a long way in making some of those people’s day. It costs me nothing, but the generosity of human touch, smile, and kind words simply don’t happen often enough for many of these people.
Okay, there are a few examples. I would seriously LOVE to hear from you about what you are doing/can do to live a more outrageously generous life. Leave a comment, or drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org