The Transforming Power of Love and Giving
April 2, 2010
Paramhansa Yogananda was asked by his disciples what they should do when he physically left this world. His reply was, “Only love can take my place.”
Some years ago a friend asked Swami Kriyananda what we should do if times got really tough on this planet. He replied, “You’ll have to learn to love heroically.”
I’ve pondered these words for decades and I feel I am beginning to understand the depth, meaning, and true relevance of these statements in our daily lives.
During my early adult years I was in two successful businesses with my father, Roy. We made great partners, and our skill sets complemented each other. Alas, fathers and sons don’t agree on everything, and I often felt hurt as a result. Some years later I came to the understanding that the hurt I felt was my own reaction, and it was my own self-preoccupation that made it all much bigger than it really was. I joke with myself now. It’s hard to tell if you’re self-preoccupied because you’re self-preoccupied!
A few weeks ago I was at my dad’s home walking around his ranch, and a wave of realization came over me. I felt how much my father has loved me throughout my 57 years. It was a revelation. It was all that mattered in our relationship. It is all that I cherish that will be left with me for the rest of my life.
I went to visit him recently, and I was determined to not think of myself or talk about my own difficult experiences from the past. I went to give love and support to him and his wife, Peggy. With this attitude I began to understand on a deeper level what “loving heroically” means. As a result I have been blessed with a deep feeling of God’s grace and joy.
This same principle applies to every aspect of your life. If you rise above a difficult situation and forget about yourself, you grow spiritually. It also applies to your relationship with money. If you give, you are being expansive and forgetting about yourself. You will then be blessed by God’s grace in this aspect of your life. When financial times get tough, you will have built up a relationship with God that will enable you to know, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that God takes care of your needs. There will be one more place in your heart that is open to God’s grace.
That deep contentment and sense of joy that you feel when you turn your life over to God is everlasting. Your income can be wiped out in an instant by any number of circumstances.
Tithing “heroically” is the answer to the financial times we are going though. Remember, it is the intention that is important, not the amount given. If you tithe with a deep sense of love for God and gratitude for all He has given you, you will build an enduring relationship that will carry you though stormy times. You will experience the supreme state of contentment and God’s joy. What else is there?
Joy to you!
“Thank You, God”