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By Pastor Paul Gauche

Today’s Word: ‘Generosity’ as in… Would you like room for cream?

I recently talked with a friend about how practicing the rhythm of generosity intends to create lavish interactions with “the world around us.” I couldn’t help feeling overwhelmed [again!] with the enormity of the word “world” in that phrase. The ubiquity of the phrase “Let’s change the world…” makes me want to either not use it or sit down, sip some coffee, and strategize how to do that.

So, how on earth do we make creative, generous changes in the world? I suggested that if we make small commitments to creating lavish interactions with just one other person each day, we’ll have been faithful to the intention of the sixth rhythm of generosity.

I recalled an experience I had while standing in line at, of all places, a coffee shop. Ellie is a barista with a global coffee company. When I walked in, the place was hoppin’. Drips were dripping, pour-overs were being poured over, and lattes and mini scones flew over the counter.

The person in line in front of me was having trouble. It was almost like she’d never been in a place like this before. But Ellie, the barista, was so gracious, kind, and welcoming to her. Above all, Ellie was patient. When all of the transaction stuff was finally finished, the customer paused, looked at Ellie, and said, “Thank you.” It was the kind of “Thank you” that might as well have included the phrase, “…for being so very patient with me!” at the end of it. Ellie looked at her, smiled, and said, “You’re so very welcome! Have a wonderful day.”

In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus tells his followers to “Go into all the world (and start with your local coffee shop) and preach the good news to every creature.” So there was Ellie behind the counter preaching the good news with a kind word, a patient and very lavish interaction in that one very cool caffeinated moment. Each one of us gets to do that today. That just might change the world!


Paul Gauche is the Pastor of Life Transitions at Prince of Peace. His posts are part of his #100days50words project, where he blogs about a different word each week. You can follow his project on Instagram (@pgauche) or his blog, Thriving Rhythms.


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