The secular world in which we live is soaked in negativity. We are continually assaulted by negative messages that are discouraging and they condition us to see our glass perpetually empty and never full. As a result, we become very self-absorbed. Self-absorption leads to depression.
I am going to counsel you on the best way to overcome all this negativity and self-absorption.
There is a tremendous power that lies in becoming a blessing to others. I love talking about this subject because even just talking about it makes me happy! You see, my sharing this information with you is a way for me to bless you! And blessing you makes me happy!!
A blessing can be anything that helps or acknowledges another person. It can be an act of service, or a gift, or even some helpful information.
The blessing must be given in love without any pressure being exerted, and with no thought to reciprocation. A blessing is a completely free gift, free to be accepted or rejected by the recipient, and again, there is no thought to a pay back.
I put this in here simply because some people have the bad habit of trying to control others by giving gifts. They give to get. That is not a blessing.
Renew your Vitality by Being a Blessing: Develop Wonderful Habit of Giving to Give
A blessing is all about giving to give ! And, because it is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20:35), the gift of giving is the gift that you are giving to yourself. It will bring you a life of true happiness!
A wonderful habit to develop is to wake up each morning thinking about who you can bless today. In fact, it is a wonderful prayer to begin your day with. Simply ask God to show you ways that you can bless others throughout your day. It is amazing how many opportunities you can find to bless complete strangers: letting them go first, opening doors, smiling… you get the picture.
Look around your office and neighborhood. If your co-worker is always in a cranky mood then make it your mission to give them a daily word of encouragement or compliment. Does that elderly person in your neighborhood need their yard cleaned up? How about offering the Single Working Mom you see at Mass on Sundays to babysit for free one night? Or, baking some cookies and dropping them off at the home of the disabled veteran down the street? If you have kids, then make it a family project together for a Sunday afternoon of baking cookies or cleaning that neighbor’s yard. They may groan and complain at first but your whole family will become blessed by learning to live a life dedicated to blessing others.
The best part is that being a blessing does not have to cost any money! Yet, it brings a huge payoff to you in how you feel about yourself. I cannot think of anything that you can do to bring more vitality and joy into your life than this.
This is an assignment I often give couples in marriage counseling. I ask them to think of a way to bless each other every day. Relationships change when this spirit of love infiltrates the darkness! What’s more – being a blessing is fun! Not only that, being a blessing is contagious! Love expands exponentially when it is given away!
I issue you a challenge. Give yourself the next week, a mere seven days, to become a blessing to others. Start today and bless as many people as you can in the next seven days.
You will be amazed at the results.
What better prayer to remind us of to be a blessing to others — than the St. Francis Prayer.
Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi
Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.
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