Is It More Blessed To Give Than To Receive

Is it more blessed to give than to receive

Is it more blessed to give than to receive

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to discuss the teaching ‘it is more blessed to give than to receive’ by sharing the story of Secret Santa.

First a quick update:

“Beware of the dangers and heartache of an affair with a married man”
Neuroscience does not support the contention that humans are hardwired to be monogamous, and therefore I teach that monogamy is choice – keeping ones vow. Nonetheless, it is natural that humans will always have an attraction to another person even when in love and in a committed relationship. And aside of the various reasons that women will be attracted to a married man, it is critical to note the heartaches and dangers facing women who choose to have affairs with married men.  Read my insights in this article.

“How to handle and enjoy the stress of the Holidays and family”
It is the most challenging time of the year. Here are some of my articles with insights, tips and strategies to help you avoid pain and instead experience joy during the Holidays:

Overcoming loneliness

How to ease Holiday stress – top 9 tips

Top tips to help you avoid Holiday arguments and fights – Top 9 tips

Top 9 tips to enjoy the Holidays (radio interview)

Now, let’s talk about the teaching ‘it is more blessed to give than to receive.’

Is it true that it is more blessed to give than to receive? What does that even mean? Do you give only to get back? This is the first article of a two-part series I am sharing with you on the teaching and philosophy that says you will receive more joy from giving than receiving, and that when you give, you will also receive ten-fold.

Let me begin with an excerpt from my book, “The Greatest Money-Making Secret of All Time” ©2006

The Secret Santa
It was a cold December night in 1979 in Kansas City Missouri. Larry was 32. He had just been fired the week before Christmas. It was the second year in a row he had been fired the week before Christmas. Larry decided to nurse his wounds at a drive-in restaurant.

Finding God strategies to happiness give and receive

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Larry gave her $20 and told her to keep the change.

“And suddenly I saw her lips begin to tremble and tears begin to flow down her cheeks. She said, ‘Sir, you have no idea what this means to me.'”

Larry went to the bank that day and took out $200. He then drove around looking for people who could use a lift. Larry said that was his “Christmas present to himself.” He’s hit the streets every December for 26 years.

He started with $5 and $10 bills. As his fortune grew, so did the gifts. In recent years, Larry has been handing out $100 bills, sometimes two or three at a time, to people in thrift stores, diners and parking lots. So far, he’s anonymously given out about $1.3 million. It’s been a long-held holiday mystery: Who is Secret Santa?

Larry Stewart, a 58-year-old businessman from the Kansas City suburb of Lee’s Summit, Missouri, who made his millions in cable television and long-distance telephone service. He chose to reveal his identity because as I write this he has been diagnosed with cancer of the Easophagus and decided he wanted to spread his message of random kindness. [Editor’s note: Larry later opened up to say that he revealed his own identity because a tabloid was about to do so and Larry wanted to tell his own story and inspire others to become Secret Santas.]

While Larry has also given money to other community causes, he offers the simple gifts of cash because it’s something people don’t have to “beg for, get in line for, or apply for.”

He came to know that feeling in the early ’70s when he was living out of his yellow Datsun 510. Hungry and tired, Larry mustered the nerve to approach a woman at a church and ask for help.

The woman told him the person who could help was gone for the day, and Larry would have to come back the next day.

“As I turned around, I knew I would never do that again,” Larry said.

Over the years, Larry’s giving as Secret Santa grew. He started a Web site. He allowed the news media to tag along, mostly because he wanted to hear about the people who received the money. Reporters had to agree to guard his identity and not name his company, which he still does not want revealed.

His entourage grew over the years, and he began traveling with special elves. People like the late Negro Leagues icon Buck O’Neil, who handed out hugs while Stewart doled out $100s. NFL Hall of Famer Dick Butkus will join Larry Stewart this year and they’ll give out $100,000 between Chicago and Kansas City. Four other elves of Larry will hand out an additional $65,000.

Give now
Many years ago, a reverend once told me, “Don’t wait for your circumstances to change to become the person you want to be. Do it now. Be it now.” Larry began to give before he had money, at a time when he was without a job. He didn’t wait to become rich to give away money. He gave money when he didn’t have much of it. It is so much easier to give away money when you have plenty of it than when you don’t. Larry became a millionaire because of how he gave. Recall I said earlier that the emotion behind the giving is key.

Larry gave with joy and love. The pleasure and joy he saw in others when he gave and helped them motivated him to give more. In so doing, he also suddenly changed his belief about what kind of place the world is. He subconsciously knew he would be OK. He also shifted from focusing on himself to focusing on contributing to others.

Larry’s actions were also a message to his subconscious mind that he was actually well off. He had faith he would be taken care of – and he was. He became a multi-millionaire. Larry was unknowingly activating the missing key to the greatest money making secret of all time.

In the first story when the thief was stealing to give to the poor, he wasn’t doing so because he had such compassion for the poor. He was giving out of anger, trying to bring balance to what he believed was a cruel world. Thus his beliefs became his reality – and he couldn’t receive – until he changed his beliefs.

– From my book, “The Greatest Money-Making Secret of All Time” ©2006

Larry Stewart died on January 12, 2007 from esophageal cancer, aged 58.

As noted above, Larry Stewart carefully guarded his identity for years; he had no interest in public accolades or adulation – only his family and a few close friends knew the truth about who Secret Santa was. In 2001, following the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, Larry handed out $25,000 in $100 bills to New Yorkers who were still suffering and in shock. And despite a front-page story by USA TODAY which profiled him, Larry still ensured that the newspaper not publish his name. In other words, Larry Stewart gave from his heart, not from ego. He focused on helping and easing people’s pain and suffering.

“I see the smiles and looks of hopelessness turn to looks of hope in an instant…After all, isn’t that what we were put here on Earth for — to help one another?”

You can give and help in your own way. You can share of your time, talent or treasure.

Time – spend time with someone who is lonely, frail or ill; simply being next to someone and listening to them sends the message that he/she is significant and this action can be uplifting, healing and inspiring for them as well as you.

Talent – Maybe you have a particular skill that can help someone in need such as gardening or repairing a person’s home or car.

Treasure – give from your treasure trunk – in the form of money or other gifts; we often fear that there is not enough, but giving changes your belief that there will be enough – it creates hope for all.

In the second part of this series, I will explore further the meaning of the blessings one gets when one gives.

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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis PhD
Celebrity Life Coach and Human Behavior Expert

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4 replies
  1. Avatar
    Tim says:

    Hello Patrick
    I just read your article “How much are you worth and deserve” and I found it fascinating. Do people have an exact amount of money that they are earning programmed in their subconscious such as $50,000 , $100,000 , $200,000, etc.. as to what they subconsciously believe they deserve. I also was struck by the difference in what people consciously believe they deserve and what they subconsciously believe they deserve and their results. Does the billionaire make what he makes because he subconsciously believes he deserves it? Does this apply to every other area of life such as the car people drive, the house they live in, health, relationships, education?


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