“Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice.” – Psalm 112:5
(The following is an excerpt from a eulogy I gave in 2006 for Millie Hamrick, a dear family friend, who passed away that year at the age of 96.)
Santa Claus had come early that year, I thought, for just inside the door of their home beneath the Christmas tree were two bushel baskets brim full and overflowing with every sort of toy you could imagine. The toy isle at the local five and dime must have been completely cleaned out. Just about the time I was about to dive head first into one of those incredible baskets of treasures I heard that sweet, loving voice. “No darling, those toys are for . . . [a certain needy family in our community.]
I was maybe four or five years old, I don’t remember exactly. But even at that young age I somehow understood exactly what she meant, who the family was she referred to, and that they were indeed needy – and I was not. Then and there I observed first hand from Millie Hamrick, and her husband Jack, one of life’s greatest virtues – a generous heart.
Millie and Jack [Hamrick] were hard-working people – Millie as a nurse for the local physician in our community, and Jack as a prominent grocer – both dedicated to their professions and the people they served. Millie lent a hand in saving many lives and in the delivery of three generations of new lives into our small community. Jack extended credit to many a struggling family in his day so they would have food on the table. More than a few were never able to pay back the debt. They were quite a pair. They bore no children, yet they claimed every child in our community as their own, and for years every high school graduating class was treated to an elaborate party in their backyard.
“Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice,” the Psalmist declares. And for Millie and Jack Hamrick, who though their possessions were modest, their cups always overflowed – good that came to them as a result of their generosity, now being carried on by the many whose lives they touched.