Will you give this guy two dollars?


There is a story of a little boy who was admiring a shiny, brand-new sports car parked on a quiet street.  He slowly walked around the amazing vehicle, savoring every angle.  As he pushed his nose up against the window to get a better view of the inside, the voice of the owner coming up behind startled him.

Bob asked, “You like my car?”  “Oh yeah, mister.  It’s awesome.” was the reply.

The proud owner said, “My brother gave it to me for Christmas.”

“Your brother gave it to you?  Didn’t cost you nothing?” the young boy asked.

“Yep, my brother gave it to me.  It didn’t cost me a penny.”

“Wow – I wish….,” the young boy began.  And of course Bob knew how he would finish the sentence  “……I wish I had a brother like that.”

But Bob was stunned when the little boy said, “I wish I could be a brother like that.”

Just this week I talked to a gentleman who is grieving the recent death of his mother.  But rather than sharing that grief with his brother and two sisters, they are already involved in a horrendous fight about dividing possessions.  None of them are in need, but the thought of getting something for nothing has erased family ties and apparently all civility.  Instead of being generous, they have allowed greed to wipe out compassion and long-standing relationships.

Which brother are you?

What was your first instinct?  Are you waiting for a hand-out from the company, the government, the lottery, or an inheritance?  Are you hoping for an unexpected and undeserved gift to make your life better?

Or are you doing the things today to guarantee your success three years from now?  The things that identify you as a leader.  The things that will allow you to be the giving brother rather than the taker?

What would it feel like to be able to give a car to someone?

Or a house, a bag of groceries from the store or two dollars to the guy selling newspapers on the corner?  Build your giving muscles rather than your fighting, taking ones.  The default position is to want to be the person who receives.  It takes intentionality and a mindset of abundance to want to be the one who gives. [Tweet This] But that will open doors of opportunity that most people will never experience.

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  • Anna

    This is really beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

  • Steve

    Thanks Dan, this was very uplifting to read today! Can you point me to or just quickly remind me of the top things we can do to insure success in the future?

    • Steve – just seeing those little opportunities to give, a smile or a kind word, put us on the path to having more resources to share.

  • Jevonnah Ellison

    Definitely want to be the one who gives. “How can I be a coach, wife, friend, daughter, sister, etc. like that?” Great post here, Dan — as always! Thank you for sharing!

    • Jevonnah – You do give so readily now! Thanks for having the heart to see those opportunities.

      • Jevonnah Ellison

        Wow, thank you Dan!

  • Ron Ryan

    “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Just ask the giver. A smile, a kind word, a cup of coffee, are simple ways to give. Don’t wait until you can buy the car.

    This is an inspirational article, Dan, just like so many of your other articles which speak to our hearts and minds.

    • Ron – absolutely don’t wait till you can give the car. If we don’t recognize the opportunity to give a smile or a kind word now we won’t have the mindset or heart to give the car later. Thanks for your comments.

  • PaulVandermill

    Greeting Dan,

    I love this! Thank you for prompting us to take pause and examine this aspect of our mindset. I find that being the giving brother, done quietly, brings me joy many times over. However, I for one, need to do this much more often! Thanks!

    • Paul – I think we all realize there are more opportunities to be the giving brother. I’m looking for one today!

      • PaulVandermill

        Ah! Thanks for sharing how you look at this, I’ll go forward today looking for those opportunities being proactive or intentional, sounds like fun!

  • Cliff Feightner

    We can give from what we possess
    A way that we can bless
    Take it down from the shelf
    And give from your self
    You will find that your life will progress

  • This is so close to home Dan. My family has gone through the whole inheritance battle in the last 12-18 months. It never ceases to amaze me how people you have known all your life can turn on one another over a few meager possessions they could have easily obtained with the right mindset and determination. I know as I grow older I gain so much more from giving than I do by receiving. Thanks for the reminder of this valuable life lesson.