Generosity is one of the most valuable traits you can instill in your child. In times of need, those less fortunate can benefit from the assistance of others. Leviticus 19:9-10 says ‘When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest / Do not go over your vineyard a second time or pick up the grapes that have fallen. Leave them for the poor and the foreigner.” Here are some ways your child can learn to express generosity toward others.
The Value of Giving Back
To express generosity, one must learn the value of giving. Indeed, one of the most godliest acts you can participate in is giving back to others.
Consider this: you see a homeless person on the street. Knowing that you have the wherewithal to, purchasing them a meal and sparing some change ensures they’re fed and can live to fight another day. It doesn’t have to stop there, either. Donating your clothes to the Salvation Army helps keep clothes on the backs of those less fortunate. There are also resources available to open a free and charitable clinic to serve your community.
Furthermore, giving doesn’t necessarily have to be material. A simple conversation with a willing stranger can actually pay dividends on that person’s day. Whether it’s just a hello, a fleeting compliment, or something more, a warm conversation always has a high probability of being fruitful.
Express Generosity Through Volunteering
Another way to express generosity is to volunteer — and there are a number of ways to do so.
There are many causes that you can volunteer for, including human rights, animals, arts & culture, health & medicine, and senior care. Finding what you’re passionate about and offering volunteer help — be it through charitable donations, working at a shelter, or raising money and/or awareness.
Helping those in need based on circumstances is a perfect way to broaden your scope on human emotion and experience. Doing such will expose you to the plight others may face and, in turn, increase your personal feelings of sympathy, empathy, and forgiveness for others. On top of that, generosity and volunteering have proven benefits for one’s mental health.
In fact, according to Geisinger, generosity and volunteering have been linked to health benefits including lower blood pressure, increased lifespan, and reduced stress and depression levels. Lynne Gallagher, LCSW states that “the act of giving can help us feel a sense of purpose, reduce our stress and depression levels and can even help us improve our self-esteem.” Gallagher also states that reduced stress and depression along with increased self-esteem “is likely a result of the chemicals that are released in the brain when people partake in giving behaviors … [which] include serotonin (the mood regulation chemical), dopamine (the ‘feel-good’ chemical) and oxytocin (the ‘cuddle’ or ‘love’ hormone).”
Learning How to Express Generosity with the Bible
The Bible is a great tool to use for learning virtuous behavior and becoming closer to God. Moreover, the Bible includes plenty of verses that encourage its readers to express generosity. As noted, Leviticus 19:9-10 encourages readers to leave food behind for the weary whilst avoiding gluttonous behavior.
Furthermore, 2 Corinthians 9:7 states, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” Essentially, do from the goodness of your heart, not for the sake of others. Or, as Proverbs 11:25 simply puts it — “A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.”