Inspiring Generosity

Inspiring Generosity with Sylvia and Jerry Lynn logo

Living generously helps others while benefiting your own mental and spiritual health. Anchorpoint’s “Inspiring Generosity” series tells stories of people like you. May these examples inspire you to live generously!

And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” (Hebrews 13:16)

A farmer gathers the first crops of the season. He processes, loads, and sells the first harvest. Then, he gives the full proceeds to his church.

This “give first” mentality inspires Jerry Lynn. His father was a farmer and routinely loaned equipment to other farmers. He did so with the expectation that some of the equipment would be returned broken. It was a meaningful act of generosity, as Jerry recalls. Jerry’s father also gave generously of his time. He served on committees, the local school board, and clubs.

Jerry’s wife, Sylvia, is a past Anchorpoint Board member and teacher. She fondly recollects the generosity of her mother. “She didn’t have a lot of money,” Sylvia notes of her mother. “But she gave lots of her time and talents to the causes she cared about.”

Jerry and Sylvia remember their first experiences with giving during Sunday School offerings. Over the years, they learned that time, talent, and testimony (e.g., advocacy) are also valuable gifts to share.

Sylvia Lynn showing her generosity by volunteering at Anchorpoint

From a young age, Jerry and Sylvia were instilled with the virtue of generosity.

Their yearnings to be generous grew as they watched the caring acts of others. The couple has carried the value of generosity throughout their lives. They have dedicated themselves to sharing their gifts in many different ways.

Through giving, Jerry and Sylvia have learned more about needs in the world. Their giving has changed and evolved with this new understanding. The couple has also discovered the personal benefits of generosity.

For Sylvia, there’s great satisfaction in giving. “Relationships are formed,” she observes. “It fulfills the human need for community—to be part of something bigger than yourself.” Sylvia gets so much out of being generous that she sometimes jokes: “I give back because I’m selfish!”

Jerry agrees that the giver benefits from being generous. “It’s the realization that I did something positive,” he remarks, “and the feeling of making an impact.” Jerry gets the most satisfaction when he’s able to see or experience the results of his giving.

“We don’t like to admit it,” Jerry says, “but a generous person gets something back.” 

To join the conversation and share your story, contact Mark Heinbockel at 412-366-1300 ext. 103 or [email protected].