Posts Tagged ‘giving

24
Dec
12

my most blessed christmas ever by charlie “tremendous” jones

Baby James and Little CharlesI was nine years old and the depression was still in full force. We came from Alabama and settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania in a little row home, which my father managed to rent. It was getting near Christmas and my dear dad had nothing to spend for Christmas for his five children ages 1 to 9. In desperation, he went to the bank to try to persuade them that he was a safe risk for a small loan. He explained his predicament, no job, no collateral, and 5 small children with Christmas approaching.

As he should have known, the banker would have to decline his request, but he had an alternative offer for my dad to consider. He explained that if dad could postpone celebrating Christmas a day or two, the children wouldn’t know it and everything would be reduced in the stores. Then he would only need half the amount he was requesting. He said if this was agreeable, he would approve the loan for a smaller amount.

Of course my dad gratefully accepted his offer. That Christmas eve, after we were all in bed, the downstairs front door sprung open. There was a lot of noise and my father rushed down the stairs to see what was happening. I followed a few minutes later and saw him sitting on that bottom step with his head in his hands. I couldn’t understand why he was weeping.

When I reached the bottom step, I could see no one in the hallway, but the hall was lined with boxes. There were boxes of food, clothing, and candy. There was a riding fire engine and a four-foot folding white paneled dollhouse. We didn’t belong to a church and the friends we had were as poor as we were. My dad returned to the bank to repay the loan. The banker surprised my dad by telling him that there was no record of this loan.

I only understood that Christmas experience years later when Jesus became my Lord and Savior. How blessed some of us are to see God’s love working in and through His children. John 3:16 is where this love story begins and those unknown servants were practicing I John 3:16. “Hereby perceive we the love of God, how He laid down His life for us: so that we ought to lay down our lives for others.”

22
Aug
12

Certain Inalienable Rights

Our country was founded on the declaration that all men have certain inalienable rights: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I would like to amend these to include: work, personal initiative, and the pursuit of going the extra mile.

If we’re not working, we cannot experience life. Work is something we do regardless of whether or not we get paid. In fact, our most vital acts are performed free of charge: raising children, bestowing love and forgiveness, volunteerism, and charity. This is what makes the world go ‘round. Working is as necessary to the individual as breathing. When the individual stops working, he stops thinking, and then stops living. My father was born in 1927 and remembers growing up during the Great Depression. His father, like many other Americans, did not have a job, but that did not stop him from working. We are on this planet to work, to give back and share that which is within us.

Personal initiative is the truest manifestation of liberty. The greatest read on personal initiative is found in Elbert Hubbard’s Life-Changing Classic, A Message to Garcia. Those of you who have read it are nodding your heads in agreement. Those of you who haven’t can purchase it for a little over a dollar, it will take you ten minutes to read, and it’s one of the top-selling books of all time. You have the right to not ask your employer how to do everything and to display some personal initiative by figuring it out on your own. You have the right as an employer to encourage your team to read this so that they can understand the infinite power of personal initiative in determining their value and even their salary. It’s the original “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” philosophy. Don’t ask your boss how to do everything, and don’t tell your employees how to do everything. One of my favorite lines is the man who does things without having to be told draws the most wages. Amen.

The pursuit of happiness requires going the extra mile. Happiness never comes from just doing the minimum. That’s called “getting by” and someday we will all have to answer to life, explaining what we did with what we were given. The status quo has got to go! No child was ever successfully raised by parents who did only the minimum. No marriage ever thrived where two people simply coexisted. No victory was ever achieved without someone, someplace, sometime, stepping out of the mediocre masses and going the extra mile. Some people are like blisters; they show up after the work is done. And there is no joy in being remembered as the bare-minimum guy. We go the extra mile because that is where the human spirit truly excels and finds its only source of happiness.

So claim these inalienable rights for yourself and achieve your true birthright now!

02
May
12

don’t fear the reaper

Every negative thought that we think is rooted in the perception that we do not have what we want or what we think we should have. It’s tough to break this kind of stinkin’ thinkin’ when we are so bred to compare and compete across every aspect of our lives. It’s all about results, results, results. Those who get results receive the best salaries, the biggest offices, the most accolades. They deliver repeatedly and consistently and if they don’t, there is something wrong with them.

But when results become the sole focus of our lives, things can become quite scary and fearful. We find ourselves asking questions such as: Am I good enough that people will like me? Will I say the right words when I speak? What if nobody buys the books I publish? Am I qualified enough for that promotion, or so bad I’ll get laid off? Why, people are even getting so delusional they are clamoring in the streets over why they aren’t reaping something someone else has sown. We’ve come so far from Hartmann von Aue’s quote, “He who helps in the saving of others, saves himself as well”, that we have turned our own sense of humanity upside down.

This stinkin’ thinkin’ is going to get exponentially worse unless everyone turns their focus on the seeds they need to sow. As Robert Louis Stevenson said, “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” As a business owner, if I went to bed thinking of the day’s results, I would never have the peace of mind to get a minute’s sleep or the courage to get out of bed in the morning. Whenever folks ask me how it’s going I say, “We are sowing a lot of seeds!” And I know there is no guarantee I’ll ever get to reap any of them, but that’s not the point.

We are put on this earth to sow, not to reap. The results that really matter won’t be measured in retirement accounts, entitlements, or even buildings, airports, or highways dedicated in our names, but in the number of lives we’ve touched, smiles we’ve shared, and totally selfless acts we’ve completed. What if everyone stopped saying, “I WANT”, and instead said, “I PLANT” and we all stopped fearing the reaper? We might actually return this planet to a semblance of its original state of Eden and become master gardeners of our own souls.

20
Dec
11

my most blessed christmas by charlie “tremendous” jones

I was nine years old and the depression was still in full force. We came from Alabama and settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania in a little row home, which my father managed to rent. It was getting near Christmas and my dear dad had nothing to spend for Christmas for his five children ages 1 to 9. In desperation, he went to the bank to try to persuade them that he was a safe risk for a small loan. He explained his predicament, no job, no collateral, and 5 small children with Christmas approaching.

As he should have known, the banker would have to decline his request, but he had an alternative offer for my dad to consider. He explained that if dad could postpone celebrating Christmas a day everything would be reduced in the stores. Then he would only need half the amount he was requesting. He said if this was agreeable, he would approve the loan for a smaller amount.

Of course my dad gratefully accepted his offer. That Christmas eve, after we were all in bed, the downstairs front door sprung open. There was a lot of noise and my father rushed down the stairs to see what was happening. I followed a few minutes later and saw him sitting on that bottom step with his head in his hands. I couldn’t understand why he was weeping.

When I reached the bottom step, I saw no one but the hall was lined with boxes. There were boxes of food, clothing, and candy. There was a riding fire engine and a four-foot folding white paneled dollhouse. We didn’t belong to a church and the friends we had were as poor as we were. My dad returned to the bank to repay the loan. The banker surprised my dad by telling him that there was no record of this loan.

I only understood that Christmas experience years later when Jesus became my Lord and Savior. How blessed some of us are to see God’s love working in and through His children. John 3:16 is where this love story begins and those unknown servants were practicing I John 3:16. “Hereby perceive we the love of God, how He laid down His life for us: so that we ought to lay down our lives for others.”

12
Apr
11

when less really is more

Tax season is a formal record of my yearlong giving, whether it’s to the government or to more altruistic entities. It’s the time all Americans gather their receipts to assess what went where. It’s a snapshot of where our giving has gone. I am currently involved in two fund raising initiatives raising money to build facilities that will bring spiritual benefits to thousands of people for generations to come. During my training they covered the different ways of giving.

Legacy giving was one of them.  Our ears perk up when we hear that word: legacy. It signifies something bigger than any of us, something that has eternal value and has broken free of the bounds of time; the gift that costs you nothing. At the other end of the spectrum was the here-and-now philosophy which one of my friends so aptly summarized as “Do your giving while you’re living so you’re knowing where it’s going.”

Donating your money, land, or resources to something that lasts forever is a tremendous return on investment. My father was adamant that “giving” was a dirty word. Instead, he countered, we should call it “returning”, since everything that passes through our hands on this mortal coil is transient and on loan anyway.

We are preoccupied with time, but the only things that last are those that are timeless. We obsess over becoming better versions of ourselves, but the only person who touches hearts is an individual who is selfless. Businesses are obsessed with cutting cost and price, yet the top category of perceived value is something that’s priceless.  And when we search for solutions we read the wisdom of the ages, not the wisdom of the week, in order to fill our minds with something timeless. Keep your focus on these qualities and you’ll wind up with more than our limited minds could possibly imagine!




Tremendous Tracey


CEO Tremendous Life Books. Book Evangelist

Join Me On:

February 2020
M T W T F S S
« Jul    
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
242526272829  

%d bloggers like this: