The Gift is in the Giving

I have to be honest. I made the woman cashier at BIG! LOTS cry. I had shopped and collected three baskets full together at the check out line and she just said saying "This is so emotional". I just kept encouraging her by acknowledging that she was playing an important part in making a lot of people very happy, that she was participating in an essential act of charity.

I rarely make people cry when I shop, but today was something special. I had checked my "Giving" jar and found it quite full since I'd been on vacation last month, so I called one of my favorite charities to find out what was on their wish list. Then, I went shopping.

I wanted to have my money make a difference on their behalf, so I went to a discount store. As I went through the store, I was thinking of the abused women and children who did not have the luxury of going out to buy what they wanted. I was on a mission of charity on their behalf.

As I took my carts, one after another, to the main checkout stand until I finished, I told them about my mission. Other shoppers came over to ask about what was going on as I checked out. I shared the story with them and they began to get excited, too.

When I delivered the bags of treasures to the organization, they were surprised. The woman I had spoken to on the phone, Lisa, said she had no idea when I was called that morning that I intended to do this. Then she said, "It feels like Christmas! It's so exciting!"

As I was finishing my purchase at the store, the cashier thanked me for making a difference in her day and for teaching her more about the importance of charity. She said she was going to go home and tell everyone about me, about what I did done.

As the man from the store helped me out to my car, he asked me "Are you really giving this all to charity?" Then, we began talking about the children. I told him that the children of the world need to know that life can be good and generous, that they can have their dreams, and that there are people out there who really care about them.

Every small act of kindness and charity can make a huge difference in life. We all need to know that we are counted and that we are visible. Even when we can not be seen.

It's important to remember to give on a regular basis. It just feels good to be generous with an open heart. Giving is the other hand of our receiving to be in the flow of life. We must continually give to keep the flow coming to us and to expect to receive that flow in return for what we contribute.

Now, the truth is every gift, especially those of charity, should be given for fun and for free with no expectation of reciprocation. However, having done our part we are absolutely entitled to expect the Universe to increase our flow as the result of what we give out!

We all have something to give – a smile, a kind word, a loving gesture, a helping hand, a bouquet of flowers, a phone call of care, and, yes, the financial prosperity that we have been blessed with.

Charity is a commitment we can make every day to reap great rewards. Giving is an affirmation that we believe in the limitless abundance of the world – a powerful affirmation that we know there is always sufficient for everyone, including us.

It's important to know that we count and that we make a difference in the world around us. Give freely, give gratefully, and give with joyful anticipation of all that you are about to receive!

YOU deserve it!