Ambassador and poet Henry Van Dyke observed, “There is a loftier ambition than merely to stand high in the world. It is to stoop down and lift mankind a little higher.” What a great perspective! Doing for others what they cannot do for themselves is really a matter of attitude. I believe that whatever I have been given is to be shared with others. And because I have an abundance mind-set, I never worry about running out myself. The more I give away, the more I seem to get to give away!
No matter how much or how little you think you have, you have the ability to do for others what they cannot do for themselves. Exactly how you do that will depend on your unique gifts, resources, and history.
Few things are of greater value to a prepared person than an opportunity. Why? Because opportunities increase our potential. Demosthenes, the great orator of ancient Greece, said, “Small opportunities are often a source of success. Help people win by giving them opportunities, and you will win with them.”
It is said you will only be remembered for one of two things: the problems you solve or the ones you create.
Abraham Lincoln made a difference that changed the world forever, but so did Hitler. Both men are equally remembered. They both were part of a problem. Only one solved one, the other created one.
Which do you want to do? That’s a key question.
Now you don’t have to make a global impact in order to be remembered for making a difference. I also don’t believe making a difference is something you do only when you reach the top of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs pyramid, or when you volunteer at the local soup kitchen or write your check to public television.
I believe you are always making a difference, every day and in every moment. As soon as you walk out your front door, you become the cause of a series of ripple effects that will forever affect the direction and experience of much of the rest of the world. And your impact will be problem-solving or problem-creating.
Think about someone from your past: a former boss, colleague, college roommate, old neighbor, past love relationship, childhood friend, previous business partner, high-school math teacher, etc.
Each person either solved problems or created them for you. They either helped you and improved you or caused you grief and brought you down.
Now get on the other side of that list: How does each of these people remember you?
With every door you hold open, car you allow to merge, smile you flash, encouragement you offer, you are making a deposit into someone’s life.
The best part of this form of giving is that your ability to give is limitless, and in the end, the feeling of fulfillment you get makes you the greatest recipient.
It’s been said, “The key to becoming BLESSED is not to think about your blessing, but how you can be a BLESSING to someone else. In that act you will find YOUR BLESSING.”
You don’t have to be a president or a tyrant to make a difference in the world. For all the people you touch every day, you make a permanent, lasting difference in their world.
ACTION FOR TODAY:
I encourage you to set a goal by answering these questions: How many blessings can you dispense this week? How many lives can you make a positive difference in?
The life most affected by this giving will be yours.
Then finally, What one thing will you do to make a difference in someone’s life today?
Psalm 68:19 (hcsb)May the Lord be praised! Day after day He bears our burdens; God is our salvation.Selah
Psalm 68 is an interesting passage. It was intended to be used in worship by Israel as a song of victory and deliverance. It recounts the many difficulties they endured and speaks of them being afflicted, oppressed, helpless, sinful, and exposed to hurt and pain; yet this Psalm recalls that God provided for His people in the tough wilderness wanderings and in the days of bountiful blessing in the Promised Land of Canaan. In both the good times and the bad, God blessed them and cared for them. In this passage, His people recognize that and thank Him for it.
Often in the bad or difficult times of our life, our eyesight grows dim and we fail to recognize God’s hand of blessing. We choose rather, to focus on the negatives and let them pull us down. At times we may not even see the positives in our situation. But friend, listen! God always gives blessings even though they may not be readily seen. Therefore, instead of focusing on what was lost, choose to focus on what is left!
I encourage you to deliberately find things to be thankful for every day of the year. Intentionally look for God’s hand at work in your life and praise Him! Remember that daily He gives multiple blessings. Matthew Henry the great Bible commentator said, “So many, so weighty are the gifts of God’s bounty, that He may be truly said to load us with them.”Yes, face life’s difficulties, but focus on the load of blessings that surround you and thank God for them. Remember, a thankful heart is a joyful heart! Happy Thanksgiving!