The Paradox Of Generosity – Part 1
Generosity is a paradox.
According to G.K. Chesterton, “A paradox is often a truth standing on its head to get our attention.” Take generosity. It’s a principle of Biblical economics in which the giver benefits more than the receiver. Proverbs 11:24-25 says, “One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.”
Clinical psychiatrist, Dr. Lynne Gallagher found that when we’re generous and focused on others’ needs, our stress is reduced. This slows premature aging and lowers our risk of death more so than those who are not generous. Generosity can stimulate the brain’s reward center. It’s measured by lower blood pressure, reduced levels of cortisol, and higher levels of endorphins – which elevates happiness and reduces depression. A Harvard Business School study found that giving money to someone else lifted participants’ happiness more than spending it on themselves. The National Institutes of Health found that when people give to charities, regions of their brain are activated with pleasure, social connection, and trust. This creates what’s called a “warm glow” effect.
Giving decreases loneliness by promoting cooperation and social connection. Several studies suggest that when giving to others, generosity is often rewarded by others down the line. So, giving is good for your health, makes you happier than spending on yourself, and decreases loneliness. I can live with that!
Is credit card debt keeping you from giving generously? Let Christian Credit Counselors help. They can create a debt management plan specifically for you. For more information call the Crown Helpline at 800-722-1976 or visit online at crown.org/ccc.