Generosity: willingness to give
This past week on my travels throughout New Zealand I was fortunate to have experienced both. Generosity was given by my new Kiwi friends (kiwi is what New Zealanders call themselves), who insisted on driving me to the hospital and waiting there with me even though it took hours out of their day. I had a wound infection and need IV antibiotics for three days. Hospitality was given by two Kiwi families who took me into their homes and said our home is your home. I was traveling through the North Island and it was a great relief not having to worry about accommodation. Kindness like this is inspiring! I was grateful for these instances of people place the needs of others before their own. Also it made me reflect and think of how often I do it.
In addition to this I met an American couple living in New Zealand. This couple was very impressed by the welcoming and friendliness of Kiwis. They said people just aren’t like this in America anymore, we’ve lost this kind of thoughtfulness. Unfortunately for them they weren’t from friendly North Dakota, but even I have noticed that New Zealand is on another level. It is still acceptable to hitch-hike here, if someone can’t help you they find you someone who can and going the extra step for another person, even a foreigner, is no big deal.
After talking to this couple I began to wonder how generous, hospitable and thoughtful I have been to friends, acquaintances or strangers. I do often find myself asking God how should I love others. And I do often catch myself so consumed with myself that I don’t even think about the needs of others. Hospitality, generosity and just everyday acts of kindness –giving a complement, writing a thank you note, inviting a friend over for dinner, initiating a conversation with a stranger, baking cookies for your neighbors, helping someone with homework- are all the answers God is giving me.