Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Giving Really Does Lead to Receiving

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Yesterday I wrote about the spiritual law of giving, which leads to receiving if done correctly and with the right mindset. I promised I would reveal some of the things that have happened to me as a result of tapping into this universal law.

The most recent act of giving and receiving actually transpired on the same day I wrote the article. It certainly helped that I was feeling GOOD because that opened the way for an attitude of gratitude, an important co-existing spiritual principle.

Plans were made to have lunch with a friend who happens to be an airline pilot. Since he had a flight to catch (no pun intended), we agreed to meet at a restaurant close to the freeway so that afterwards he could head straight to Cleveland airport with minimum delay.

Since the article I had just written that morning was still fresh on my mind, I decided I would "walk the talk" and do something about it. So I made a secret decision to treat Les for lunch. It felt free, clear and without any expectation of return (important rules of true giving).

When the waiter took our order, instead of asking for separate checks like I normally do, (it makes dining out with friends so much easier, wouldn't you agree?), I requested that our orders be taken on one check this time.

As I was saying this, I noticed out of the corner of my eye that Les raised an eyebrow. He was caught off guard.


Inwardly I chuckled with delight. This was really fun - there's nothing more satisfying than seeing the surprise register on an unsuspecting recipient's face!

When the check finally came, I immediately snatched it from the waiter's hand and paid for it with minimum of fuss or resistance from Les (a good thing because receiving is just as important as giving - it keeps the give and take cycle flowing).

We bid farewell with me wishing him a safe flight. On my way home, it occurred to me that I needed to do a fresh load of laundry. I had recently bought a new brand of Tide detergent called "Simple Pleasures" (Vanilla and Lavender scent) and was eager to try it.

The first thing I did after arriving home was to rip the bed sheets off the mattress and take them down to the laundry room. After piling them in the washing machine and pouring a full cap of delicious smelling detergent on top of it, I inserted the laundry card to pay for the load.

The digital readout flashed: LOW.

Darn! There wasn't enough on the laundry card to pay for it.

I had forgotten to add more money to it the last time I did laundry. Galloping back up the stairs two steps at a time to my apartment, I peered into my wallet and found, to my relief, a crisp ten dollar bill waiting for me.

There was just one more thing I had to do to make this laundry a reality.

Jumping into my car (I was operating on pure adrenaline - I must have had one too many cups of coffee that morning), I sped up to the management's office where they had a wall-mounted money laundering machine in the lobby so that tenants could put more funds on their cards 24/7.

Upon arriving, I breathlessly inserted the laundry card in the designated slot and then attempted to slide the new ten dollar bill into the mouth of the red machine.

To my horror, the beast spit it out not once but several times. Apparently its taste buds found the crisp paper money too bitter of a bill to swallow!

No matter what I did to coax the temperamental machine into eating its lunch, it steadfastly refused to nibble. In an attempt to stem the rising bile of desperation, I took a deep breath and murmured to myself, "Okay, okay, all is not lost."

There was one last course of action.

I spun around and went straight to the assortment of buttons behind me and rang the bell of the leasing agent's office. It took a few minutes for the pleasantly plump woman to answer the door and buzz me in.

Apparently she was in a good mood for she was smiling and seemed to have an extra spring in her step. "This is a good sign," I thought.

Do you have an older ten dollar bill to swap with me?" I asked hopefully. "I can't seem to get this in the machine."

"No, we don't keep cash in our office," she said. "Here, let me try."

She proceeded to do exactly the same thing I did with the same dismal results.

But after the third or fourth try, the machine suddenly decided that it was hungry after all and greedily lapped the money up.

During the ensuing feeding frenzy, the machine's brain went haywire because instead of reading $10.00, it reported that it just took in $20.00, TWICE THE AMOUNT!

Shocked (and awed at the same time) I had to take a double look, just to make sure I wasn't imagining things. I even pointed it out to the leasing agent and she was like, "Hey, you lucky boy!"

To the average person, this incident would have seemed to be a lucky stroke of coincidence.

But you and I know better.

It was not an accident.

It was a message from the universe that I was in the flow, in sync with universal spiritual principles. It was a sign of more prosperity to come because I, the giver, gave with an open heart, without attachment and with complete freedom and joy earlier that day.

And look what happened - the universe indirectly paid for my friend's lunch!

Yesterday's experience was an example of how you don't always get something back directly from the recipient of your giving. It also shows how quickly the universe can respond to your generosity. Other times, you may not see anything tangible for days, months or even years. It all happens on the universe's timetable, not yours. That's why it's important to trust and let go.

Yes, I have a couple more "give and take" stories to share with you in the coming days. It has to do with a speaking engagement that came about unexpectedly last week and the rip-roaring success I am having with the "Flight to Hartford" project with my church.

Stay tuned!

Food for thought: The most effective remedy to unblock the flow of prosperity is true giving. This law of giving will never fail to astound you. Try today!
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