At the close of life the question will be not
much have you got, but how much have
you given; not how
much have you won,
but how much have you done; not how
have you saved, but how much have you
much have you loved and
served, not how much were you
Nathan C. Schaeffer
often think about what things will be like when I die, not
because I'm morbid, but because I know that the way I look
back upon my life depends upon what I do today. If I
am to be on my deathbed someday, looking back on my life,
what will I see? Will I see a lifetime in which I've
served and given, or will I see a lifetime during which
I've done everything I can to make myself feel better, or
to make myself look better in the eyes of others?
of these latter strategies seems to be fulfilling to
me. I believe not that we're physical creatures
searching for spiritual experiences, but that we are
spiritual creatures experiencing physical life. And
if that's the case, there's much more to who we are than
this planet and its trappings and temptations.
very important that I treat myself well and respect
myself, as long as that doesn't degrade into selfishness
or even hedonism. The better I treat myself, the
more helpful I can be to other people on this planet.
the true indicator of my contribution to life will not be
what I did or bought for myself--it will be what I did or
gave to others. I'm not wealthy, so I can't give
lots of money, but I do have the ability to give
encouragement, praise, love, hope, and support.
These are things that stick with people for a very long
time, and that they're more likely to pass on to
others. And each time these things are given, the
peace of this planet increases, the amount of positive
energy increases ever so slightly.
can spend our lives always searching out honors or
accolades, but my hope is that I spend my life searching
out chances to help others without any thought of a return
on what I give, without any expectations of how others
will react to my help. In that way I'll be giving
sincerely, lovingly, and truly.