On a vacation with our kids, shortly before 9/11, Jim had an accident and almost lost his life. He was paralyzed for a time, and we didn’t know if his spinal cord would ever heal and allow him to walk or use his hands again. So life as we knew it changed dramatically. Jim had just started a consulting business and I was needed to care for his every need, so needless to say, our jobs were over for the time being.
Miraculously, as the months went by, Jim got better. But the experience really changed our view of - well - just about everything. After Jim's paralysis subsided, he arranged for Christopher Reeve to come to town for a fund raiser for our local rehabilitation hospital. Chris' visit was a great success and gave us a peek into a world of generous living that was beyond what we had ever experienced before.
Our view of the world had expanded like one of those flat dry little sponges that get huge when you throw them in hot water. We had been thrown in hot water for sure. I’m not saying we have everything figured out now, but we do know life is not just about logos on your clothes and country club memberships. What matters is the kind of world you leave behind when it’s all over.
One of my favorite people says “drive by any junk yard and you’ll see the toys of people’s adult lives. That’s where everything ends up." Not that we shouldn't have nice things, just that "things" are not the foundations of a meaningful life. Which brings to mind an old German saying that goes: What I spent, I had, what I saved I lost, what I gave I have. I guess Jim and I have come to know that is true.
World Changing Generosity, our book, is a love letter to all those who practice the great art of loving others. We hope you'll read the book and see why we are humbled by the stories of ordinary people who have done extraordinarily generous things. We also hope, through the pages of WCG you'll find your own place in the movement of generous people who are working to change the world. You don’t have to be rich, just available, as you will see.
Please post on this site. Tell us about your journeys of generosity...what you think. What it meant. If you have difficulty with decisions about giving money. I think we've been there on most of these issues too. Let us hear from you!