21 Stories of Generosity: Real Stories to Inspire a Full Life by CJ Hitz
“Jesus knew a little something about generosity. Generosity oozed out of every pore in Jesus’ body. He gave sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, attention to the outcast, cleansing to the leper, food for the hungry, and even new life to the dead.
And in one final Act of Generosity that trumps all others, He gave Himself completely in death so that mankind could be restored and freed from the curse of sin.”
In the present culture, generosity seems to be linked only to the Christmas spirit, but is rarely thought about the other eleven months of the year. Yet generosity is talked about as a signpost for the early Christian church. It was said in the New Testament that the early believers were known for their love for each other. Their generosity radiated out of Jerusalem to the spreading communities of Christ’s followers. From there it spread on to non-believers and was one way the new Christians were known.
As a culture, we’ve all but forgotten how to be generous. The emphasis on self help, self improvement, self aggrandizement is rampant and has to some extent curbed incidences of generosity with growing emphasis of distrust, whether one deserves the generosity given or not. That is one reason I find this book such a refreshing draught in a desert of self emphasis. Among these stories are incidences where generosity was completely unearned, unsought and unexpected–given to the individual or family telling the tale.
Many of the stories were reflections on such a case of generosity that it inspired the teller to live by its example. Some individuals began spreading generosity around quietly while others created ministries of giving. These are not stories of people crowing about their own achievements or worth. So many are tales of joy, meant to bless the reader with inspiration and hope. Human kindness is not dead yet.
One of my favorite stories was about a person who obeyed the impulse to purchase someone’s groceries while she was waiting in line. She recognized the person as one who had come to her church asking for some financial help. What made the incident special for me was the writer’s reflections about this later. The person she saw in the store hadn’t made a very good impression on her. In spite of that, she felt compelled to demonstrate generosity anyway. Her conclusion was about obedience. God doesn’t ask us to judge whether a person is worthy of our generosity. He just asks us to obey Him when He prods us to action. It reminded me of a conversation I had decades ago with a loving godly woman; we were discussing the term “used.” Her point to me was that in the world, the term means to be taken advantage of or despoiled somehow. But in God’s eyes, to be “used” is a blessing. It’s our choice how we view being used. That short conversation changed my point of view and from that moment on I was determined to be obedient to God’s prompts.
I hope you will take the time to read this little book. Many of the stories are endearing, motivational, and heart-warming.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of the print book from the author CJ Hitz and Body and Soul Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
- Living a Generous Life @ChristmasCount @goodmenproject (notesfromasouthernkitchen.com)
- Gift # 4 – Generosity (31giftsfromgod.com)
- Beautiful: On the Fifth Day of Christmas, Let There Be More Generosity (christainnewyork.com)
- Compassion Offering. (suncrestcultivating.wordpress.com)