Thursday, June 16, 2011

Generosity the habit of giving freely without expecting anything in return. It can involve offering time, assets or talents to aid someone in need. Often equated with charity as a virtue, generosity is widely accepted in society as a desirable trait.

I have overwhelmed by the generosity of people on our camp. I knew that it was a tight community, that people tend to help each other since we are all far away from home and going through the same stuff but the level of which people have blessed us has exceeded my expectations and really challenged me in how I respond to others and show generosity.

Before we arrived, we were put in touch with a family who answered questions, gave us advice, went and bought tons of food to stock our house so we wouldn't have to run out and do groceries right away. Showed us around camp, invited us out places, took John to get our dog at the airport and really made the first few weeks amazing. They were so helpful and still are in introducing us to people and places, giving us tips and phone numbers and welcoming us into their home and family. They have been tremendously generous with their time and have been amazing! Everyone needs someone like them prior to moving overseas!

Upon arriving, we had neighbors come over asking us if we needed anything, introducing themselves and even stopping by on their way into town asking if they could pick up food etc for us because we were new. Or inviting us out with them on shopping trips or to take us places anytime. I have been convicted on how we didn't make the first step in meeting neighbors back home and welcoming them to the community. We missed out on an opportunity to serve them. I am challenged to not let that happen here and remember how much I appreciated their thoughtfulness. We have consistently had people just walk up and ask if we are new (it is a tight community) and immediately introduce themselves and ask if we need anything. They often ask for our number and call to invite us out to stuff. The other morning a lady called and invited out to a weekly breakfast/coffee with a bunch of other ladies and many have kids. Everyone is generous with the relationships and community that they already created and so welcoming to include you.

A co worker of John's let us borrow an extra TV and DVD player so we would have something, another person offered to take John into Khobar one night to shop all night. He took a whole night away from his wife and three kids just to take John shopping to get things we needed. He also gave us old cell phones he had so we could use them until we could go get our own. The same friend who let us borrow a TV also let us borrow his golf cart while he went home for three weeks to help get around and it has been amazing. People offer to pick up and take John home from work in the morning and during lunch time and at night so he doesn't have to ride the bus.

And then the other night another co worker of John's who has two cars and his family just left for the summer came over and brought us his GMC Yukon to use during the summer around camp. Seriously! He just came over and gave us his car to drive around camp! You have no idea what an answer to prayer that is! I had no idea what I was going to do when we had to return the golf cart next week. I had no idea how we would get to swimming or friends houses or do anything around camp besides sit at home and this is beyond amazing. I can't believe it and we should be able to buy a car before his family comes home so we essentially have a car from now on. We can't (and have NO desire at all) to drive his car off camp as we don't have an Iqama (residence permit) or a drivers license but we can get around camp which is huge! I can get to the clinic, to swimming lessons, our friends houses, to the commissary, to the dining area etc! I am so thankful and singing praises!

So, I have been experiencing tremendous generosity all over by many people and in many different way even beyond what I mentioned above and have been convicted to really evaluate my level of generosity, what are the barriers that have keep me from being as generous I should be with the resources I have been blessed with. I am excited about learning what the Word has to say more about generosity and how to apply it. But I challenge you as well to really look at your life...ask if you are truly as generous as you should be? Do you give freely of time, friendship, resources, money as you should? I challenge you and myself to be generous people... what a difference we could make for the kingdom!

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