Monday, May 4, 2009

Givers and Takers

A wise man once said to me, "Show me your calendar and your checkbook and I will show you where your heart is."

We don't get to Heaven on good works.

But, good works are the fruit of moral people.

People that are in public service made a choice and do it everyday.

Teachers.

Firegighters.

Police.

Military.

Border Patrol. (Perhaps the most under-appreciated group of public servants in our country.)

Mayors and city council members in cities and towns across the USA. (Yes, some lost their way. But the majority do it because they care.)

Coaches of youth sports.

Church and synagogue workers.

CIA, Secret Service, FBI and every other law enforcement agency.

Social workers.

And millions more.

These folks made a choice to give their lives to serving.

This doesn't mean that those that work in the corporate world are wrong. Or that they don't or can't give. Statistics show that most do.

I have been blessed to not have to work for the past year.

I have been able to spend most of my time giving back to the military. And being a dad that can volunteer by working in my daughter's class, coaching basketball, helping my little town in Texas.

My grandparents and parents taught me. I saw my sweet Patsmama (that's what we called our grandmother), make sandwiches for the homeless till the day she died.

I saw my mom walk across the street from the old pharmacy in East Point, Georgia to hand a black woman at the bus stop $20 in 1962. I didn't understand. She explained that that woman needed it more than we do. And we were far from having money to spare. I could have bought a new bike with that money. But she taught me a life lesson in that moment.

I have seen my dad work countless hours in church meetings, civic meetings, senior citizen charities, and taking care of his mom and dad when they were in nursing homes.

I will go back to work soon. But, I will never again neglect my ability to give.

I hope I leave this world as a net giver.

I hope you do too.

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