Why Charity Needs Big Vision To Bring About Big Change

Why is it that so many of our attempts to make a difference in the lives of others by way of our care and generosity so often leaves us feeling discouraged and exhausted, while those we try to help remain relatively unchanged?

The Magic of Thinking Big

I began listening to an audio book recently, read from the printed classic that has been around for over fifty years. The Magic of Thinking Big, written by David Schwartz and first published in 1959, is essentially about the importance of having a positive attitude. It’s about seeing what can be, not just what is. It’s about being driven by a vision for tomorrow and not being hamstrung by our circumstances today. It’s a self-help book of sorts, aimed at assisting people to set their goals high and apply positive thoughts to achieve them. It’s not an ‘airy-fairy’ principal about wishing ourselves into a certain state of being. It’s really about how big thoughts lead to big actions that ultimately lead to big change. And, for the last few decades it’s been a means of motivating men and women to achieve positions of leadership, others to improve their lifestyles, and others to gain success in their businesses.

Charity + Big Thinking = Change

While listening to the audio book, I found myself wondering: How could the magic of thinking big be used to change the lives of others?
Is it possible that the attempts we make to bring positive change to some people’s lives so often fails because our thinking, our vision for what they can become, is too small?
Is it because our reaching out to others in need is determined by where we see they are today and not by what we see them becoming tomorrow?

Let me illustrate that: You see someone hungry today, so you reach out to them with a loaf of bread…today!
But where will they be tomorrow?
Probably needing another loaf of bread!

Though the beggar needs your loaf of bread today, without your big thinking for his tomorrow, your vision, his circumstances remain exactly the same.

This is not about discouraging the giving of a loaf of bread to the poor, the reaching out to a very real need in the present. Rather, it’s about adding to it…adding your vision to your charity.

Why is your vision so important?

Big Thinking Is A Bright Light

He needs your vision because it’s too dark at the bottom of the ‘pit’ for him to see it for himself. The vision you provide is the very first step to his recovery. It’s a light shining down to him, and the first thing he does when he sees it is lift his head. Light has that effect! It draws attention without fail!

Whether it’s the alcoholic or drug addict, the victim of rape or child abuse, or the friend shattered by a broken relationship, draw attention away from the darkness of the present to the light of the future.
I apply this principal in the classroom. As a teacher, one of the very first things I do to motivate struggling, sometimes ill-disciplined children is to help them see outside of the classroom, not to the view through the window but to that place where they one day can be, what they one day can become.

What if they don’t see the light, though? What if their ‘eyes’ to see their tomorrow’s have ‘crusted’ over with the ‘mucus’ of what they observed yesterday?

The Importance Of YOUR Big Thinking

What’s important is that you see the light! Sometimes, it’s not going to be about their seeing the vision you shine. If they can’t see it, you must!
This will have a powerful effect on how you reach out to them, what you do with them, and where you lead them. It will require the effort of entering their pit to bring them out, the effort of not only helping them see the light, but helping them walk in it. This is the power of your thinking big today for their better tomorrow!

This is the magic of thinking BIG for them…of thinking BIG to change their lives…and in the process, of thinking BIG and changing your own.

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