Down and Out
I met a woman the other day, and she told me how she serves the down and out.
Certain statements trigger me to think, ask, and wonder, “Is there another perspective? Have I missed something? Did she miss something?” Labels always make my ears perk up. I don’t know about you, but in my lifetime I’ve had dozens of labels thrown at me or on me, and now I question if they fit me at all and if I should let them stick. I don’t just take them as they’re dished out. But, on this particular day, I thought to myself, “Who’s really down and out?”
I think when someone crosses our path who’s just lost their job, been diagnosed with a disease, or going through the dissolution of a relationship, maybe the opportunity to help them is about more than just needing to serve them in their struggle. I wonder if we have as many if not more lessons to learn as we walk with them on their journey. Maybe it’s our invitation to come UP and IN! We should step up to the purpose of our lives and into the gift of blessing others.
I love the idea of a gratitude journal, writing, speaking and sharing what we are grateful for each day. To be honest, once you do that for a while you might start to think too much about yourself. Instead I invite my audiences to do a giving journal and record or share what they gave away each day. Did they listen to someone repeat a story multiple times, did they offer help to someone in the office when it wasn’t part of their job, did they let someone merge on the freeway in rush hour, or did they buy a coffee for the person behind them in line?
You see, gratitude is all about what we get, but giving is about serving. Serving is a privilege for the server as much as those who are being served, those we might want to think aren’t at the same point in life that we are. Some of the happiest people I know have little in the way of material goods but have deep relationships and enormous joy in the face of their challenges.
What does living your best life look like to you?
Are you down & out? Are you serving someone on their journey?
Are you struggling to see the gift of serving? Who has served you in your struggles?
Do you let the labels stick?
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