Friday, November 4, 2011

Words, Words, Words: A Triple Dose of Things to Think About

First Dose

Last night, at our Stephen Ministry meeting, Stephanie shared a story about what happened after her mom told her children, "When you help people, good things happen to you."  What a great life lesson to learn from your grandma.

Stephanie encouraged her two boys to donate some of their Halloween candy to be sent to the troops in Afghanistan, and they gave so much candy it had to be weighed in two separate piles because the scale wasn't big enough for all of it. The collection group paid for donated candy, but the boys agreed with Stephanie that the group should keep the money and use it to help with the cost of shipping the candy overseas.

A few days later, Stephanie was notified that one of her boys had won an MP4 in a drawing held by the group. Stephanie reminded the boys of what their grandmother had told them. Lesson learned.

When you help people, good things happen to you. You won't always win a cool electronic device, of course, but still. It's sorta worth the effort for a chance, isn't it?

Second Dose

This morning, when I logged onto Happy News, I found this quotation:

"Just as a cautious businessman avoids investing all his capital in one concern, so wisdom would probably admonish us also not to anticipate all our happiness from one quarter alone." Sigmund Freud

A succinct corrolary to Freud's wordy observation is "Expectation is the mother of disappointment." When we expect too much happiness from one part of our lives (a person, a career, marriage, parenthood, material items), that one part is destined to disappoint us. Life is far too rich and diverse and ever-changing to allow for this sort of narrow anticipation.

Plus, when we suffer the extreme disappointment that follows extreme expectation, we might grow bitter and angry. I have known several people whose bitterness and anger made me wonder what sort of disappointment they had suffered, what kind of happiness they had anticipated and failed to receive.

Do not become like these bitter, angry people. Open yourself to life and its diverse sources of happiness, whatever direction they come from.

And that ties in nicely with the third dose of words for the day.
Third Dose

I had to share something from Pinterest because I must pretend I get something meaningful and valuable from the hours I spend scrolling through pictures there. This week's pin of interest may be a bit edgy, but I think the attitude expressed here has a lesson for me, a lesson about not worrying and not stressing and just grabbing the good in life and hanging on for an exciting ride. Maybe you need this lesson, too.

Go forth and Carpe!

Please share some time in your life when you experienced the personal benefits of helping people, or when you carped the hell out of a diem.


  1. Just the fact that I may be able to help someone and see the results is enough. My old Pastor use to say, "You can NEVER outgive God." The more you "empty the cup" the more He fills it. And it's true.

  2. I've have benefited many times from helping others. Last winter my husband decided to buy a new snowblower. Our old one was still in good shape. My son was enjoying a Michigan UP winter without a snowblower, so we decided to pass on the old one to him. We brought the new snowblower home. Switching them out in the garage, he decided that he could spruce up the old one before taking it north. The next day we made another trip back to the store for parts. There was a floor model of the same snowblower we just purchased, for $300 less. We brought the first one back, still in the box. And got our $300 discount. We never would have known about it if we hadn't decided to pass on that old spruced up snowblower.

  3. Thank you for the post. With my divorce happening I can see the wisdom.


  4. Oh, Susan! Thank you--I just saw this post today, and I totally needed it today! Especially #2. And then #3 came and I totally started cracking up! ;) Thank you!!!


Thanks so much for taking time to comment!