Living on generosity
19 July 12
We live on generosity. Each day I am thankful for what we have and am constantly reminded that others are blessing us in so many facets of our life.
I drive a car that was generously given to us and fixed by others. We have been eating food prepared for especially for us, and so we are sustained by kindness with every meal. I use a phone many times a day and never see a bill — someone has chosen to offer love to our family by taking care of it.
We travel and experience the hospitality of many families who welcome us in. When at home in our shed, I am constantly aware that we are not paying for water, electricity or even the wireless internet access which allows me to stay connected online.
How can we charge rent on our house when we are not asked for rent in return? So we don’t. We stopped charging rent, and although I experienced a moment of panic when faced with unexpected bills after Elijah’s death, they have all been taken care of in ways I didn’t expect.
Even the money that I use to buy things comes as a generous gift from the Australian government — and I do not take it for granted. We live in a wonderful country that offers payments to all families and looks after those who have a low income. Pure religion? Well, we call it social security.
Generosity is different from giving, simply because giving can be a physical act that doesn’t require love. Generosity is not dependant on the size of the gift, nor is it connected to a specific outcome, but it relies on the attitude of the heart. Generosity begets generosity because it comes from the heart of love that beats inside us all.
When we first made a conscious decision to enter a new economy, I didn’t know that our own acts of generosity would come back to us in such a powerful way. However, in embracing a world where money is not extracted from people and acts instead as a medium to create relationships, we’re creating a better world for our children.
I still need to use money to acquire things, to pay for services, to live — essentially. However, in getting so close to another human being that I almost touch their hand as I pass over a bit of plastic or metal, I am given an opportunity to bless them.
Money gives us an excuse to talk to the person who is operating the cash register, to connect with humour, love and concern. It allows us to share a bit of our lives with every purchase, and in a real way — to make the world a better place.
We’re living in the reality of a new economy and finding freedom and blessings in doing so. Our children will be able to make their own decisions about the role money will play in their lives, but at least they will have seen that it doesn’t make the world go around — love does.