September 1st was a beautiful Saturday and the homeschooling community put on a Chicken BBQ Benefit for one of our members. The Czarnecki's lost their house completely in a fire while they were on vacation in July. My mind cannot comprehend the loss. Their story is told here.
The Benefit included a raffle of various items that had been donated. A couple of them were highly sought after:
1. a scenic airplane ride for two
2. a beautiful orchid in a handcrafted clay pot
The one I was after was the orchid. I bought my tickets and eagerly placed them in the bag. But then I noticed that other people had their eye on the same orchid. One lady in particular named Pat. We started bantering back and forth and after she added her tickets, I purchased more and on the game went. It was all in good fun. Pat and I talked about the care needed for an orchid since she was much more knowledgeable than I. When the names were drawn, guess who got the orchid???
It went to Pat! She had earned it. When we counted up the 99 tickets in the bag, her name appeared so often we just had to laugh. I was honestly happy for her, but I knew what I wanted for my upcoming birthday. I was going to ask for an orchid. :)
But then Pat unexpectedly came up to me and said she wanted ME to have the gift. When I refused, she insisted saying she wanted to practice generosity. What could I say to that? We ended up splitting it. Pat kept the pot and gave me the orchid. Talk about feelings: humble, teary, happy, blessed... all jumbled up inside. But the idea of practicing generosity has stayed with me.
I heard that the airplane ride was won and yet also given away. To the Czarnecki's since Carolyn had never flown before.
And then there was the matter of the snowflake rolls that we served with the BBQ dinner. I had inquired about and received a discount but the morning I arrived to pick up the order, the owner said she wanted to help even more and gave me a bigger break than I had anticipated.
Practicing generosity. The Benefit itself was an act of generosity. Families were there in force volunteering their time and energy. Generosity has a way of bouncing back to you. It's actually a Biblical principle, whether you think about it or not when you are practicing generosity.
There are 5 days left on this link if you would like an opportunity to practice generosity towards the house-raising for the Czarnecki's.
Besides, I am sure you can think of your own example of generosity coming full circle. If you would care to comment, I'd love to hear about it.