Give It; Receive It

“The sense of fulfillment is often hidden in kindness to others”

I’ve enjoyed being able to coach a few folks on nutrition, heath and weight loss. One person I was coaching recently decided to get healthy and within a week lost a chunk of weight.  Simple to do, really.  Make the decision. Add fresh greens.  Drink more water.  Cut back on carbs.  Keep physically moving.

helping-othersAfter the initial 10 day start program, I asked what they learned so far.  “I am amazed that I didn’t have to change very many things.  I feel like I’m gaining a lot!  I’m gaining confidence. I’m gaining comfort. I’m gaining joy.”

For me, I shared in their joy.  I gained as they lost. A sense of fulfillment was wrapped up in helping someone else.  I know you’ve had that experience as well.  You help someone out – it benefits their life – you share in their happiness.  I believe we are wired this way.

Sad is the person who only helps themselves.  Frustrated is the one who focuses on taking and not giving.  Bitter is the taste of selfishness.

To whom are you going to offer help this week?

(To Find out more about the 10 day start program, click here)




How to Find Happiness on $1.60

starbucks_coffeeCoffee house gift cards tend to be my favorite.  I use them up to last drop. However, the other day, I didn’t.  The barista handed me my tall half-caf and slid my used gift card across the counter.

“Can you check the balance?”
“Sure,” She said.  “There’s a dollar sixty left on your card.”
“Thanks,” I said.

My normal reaction would be well that’s not enough for a full coffee purchase but I’ll apply it to my next one.  This time, I had an idea.  Sliding the card back to the gal, I said,  “Would you apply the remaining balance to whomever is next in line at your drive-thru?” Her eyes and half-opened mouth gave away her confusion.  But then she understood and repeated back to me my request, just to make sure.

She smiled and walked the card to the hostess at the window.  I took a quick sip of my steaming coffee and walked to my car.

What happened next took me by surprise.

A feeling of happiness and exhilaration welled up inside me.  What caused it?  Was it the look on the Barista’s face?  Was it the fact that I had finished yet another gift card?  Maybe it was the kick of the caffeine.  None of the above.

What caused my heart to race and changed my attitude for the rest of the day was that I gave something to someone without any hope of getting something back.  Even though it was such a small amount, that’s how being a giver can change your attitude and your life!  Imagine what could happen if I took giving seriously!


Winston Churchill said  “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”  I believe that to be true.  Life is more than what you accumulate.   Life is made rich by the free sharing of that which you have.

I’ve become addicted by using gift cards in this way.  Several times since then, I’ve randomly paid for the person in line behind me with my gift card.  Be a giver and your attitude in the moment and your perspective on life will change.

Try it.  I dare you.




A few weeks ago, I attended the funeral of a man who had poured out his life into the lives of others.  His passion was focused on helping organizations and Christian educational institutions provide excellence in the teaching of students.  A tall man with a  gentle smile, he would often be seen stooping down to meet the gaze of a 7 year old, trying to figure out if going to school was ok.  One Wednesday, as he was golfing, he was gripped with the pains of a heart-attack and went home to heaven.

David lived his life as if everyday were his last.  He loved deeply and served graciously.  He talked gently and loved abundantly.  In short, he made his life count.

What about your life?  When the etchers chip your epitaph into the gravestone of your life, what will they write?

Many of us put wealth, status and power at the top of our list as indicators of success.  In the grand scheme of the universe, these things are fleeting.  So how can you live a life that is defined by true success?  Here are 3 pointers.

1.  Make it about others and not yourself.  We are all born with glasses turned backward.  We see ourselves as the center of the universe.  But making your life count means to flip the glasses and put others first.  Someone once said,

“The value of a man’s life is in the counting of his positive influence on others.”

2.  Make it about giving and not getting.  In our country, we have more than most people in the world.  Health, wealth and resources more than provide a quality of life that most on the globe only dream of.  Making your life count means filling the needs of those around you based on a heart of love.  That kind of heart does not expect anything in return.

3.  Make it about serving rather than self-seeking.  Today, ask yourself, “How can I serve people around me?”  “What is it that I can do for someone that is unexpected and will add value to their lives?”  Even these simple questions can make people feel loved and, in return, you are fulfilled in serving.

If you seek to make your life count, you will have the kind of life that true success defines – please God by serving others.  God even says that He sees what you do when you strive to make your life count.  (see Hebrews 6:10)

Question:  How else can you make your life count today?