So, I’ve started watching yet another Reality Show – Oprah’s Big Give. It’s an interesting concept – winning by giving the most away – judged on leadership, accomplishments, creativity and presentation. The last episode had the terms raised for everyone:
Billionaire brothers Joe and Gavin Maloof, owners of the Sacramento Kings, shock the seven contestants with a huge surprise: a suitcase filled with hundreds of thousands of dollars and only 24 hours to give it all away! Each contestant is given $100,000 of the Maloof’s fortune and the catch is that they can’t spend more than $500 on any one person or $10,000 at any one place. The stakes are huge, panic sets in and the judges deliver a startling decision!
Seems easy to give away money – but the other thing that was included in this last episode was that they couldn’t give away any cash! Some were stumped and others dove right in to the challenge.
I loved the give away where one of the contestants went in to Target, creeped people out by chasing them down, but then they saw she seriously wanted to talk to them and listened – she found 20 people and told them each that they had 5 minutes to fill up their baskets and she’d pay for everything. I was worried that she’d not match the rules of $500/ea, but it all worked out. People were reluctant, then astonished, then turned into raving competitors racing through the aisle to make the most of this unexpected shopping spree! It was hilarious – but very touching from a few folks who through tears were so grateful for this unexpected windfall! Can you imagine being able to do this, or to be in the store and benefit from this?
Another favorite of mine was the guy who went into a “Midas” (?) repair shop and told the disbelieving clerk that he wanted to pay $500 on each bill that had outstanding charges for car repair up to $10K, but including an extra $500 for the 3 or 4 employees working there. They tried to talk him out of it, not understanding, but in the end, a boy and his father (who the clerk had to interpret for as they spoke Spanish) were overwhelmed by the generosity. The little boy said, “This is the best day of my life!” and “Thank you, I love you!” as they left the store shaking their heads! The clerk took his $500 and promptly responded that he wanted to pay for the first several customers’ oil change the next day in an effort to pay the generosity forward.
And lastly – one girl found a street flower vendor, bought $2000 worth of the remaining flowers they needed to sell and then proceeded to turn an intersection in mayhem and madness as she ran from car to car with free flowers – the smiles on the faces told it all – it was fun!
So, I know I certainly don’t have those kinds of funds to give away – if I did, that w0uld be fun – but I do have the wonderful opportunity to give away a reflection of Jesus who lives inside of me! Taking a lesson from the show, can you imagine if you created opportunities everywhere you went to intentionally leave people with astonished faces and disbelief because of the kindness you showed? Walk into the next store you’re going to and figure out a way to astonish someone. Maybe you do pay for their groceries in front of you. Maybe you help someone to their car. Maybe it’s just noticing someone, acknowledging them and giving them a smile. Maybe it’s encouraging the worn out clerk, teller, checker, salesperson, doctor, nurse, waiter….there’s endless possibilities. Turning your life into having a perspective for others rather than worrying about the perspective from others is a good thing. I dare you – start your own version of the BIG GIVE!