Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What You Give Out, Comes Back To You

"Matter can never be destroyed it simply changes its form."
I can’t remember the first time I heard the lesson of reaping and sewing; that what you plant, you harvest. In other words, whatever you put out in the Universe will come back to you. I can recall my mother saying “What goes around comes around.” And I know that my pastor taught that whatever you do to and for the world is exactly what will be done for and to you. Once I got up the nerve to ask him just when this would happen. My childhood pastor, Ross Rainey was very kind and soft spoken (which is really amazing considering the fact that he was a Church of God in Christ Pastor; they are typically kind, but boisterous.) Rev. Rainey thought about my question for a moment and then he said I want to think about this some more. I had to wait an entire week before I had an answer but when I got it, my behavior was forever changed. Rev. Rainey told me that some people give just because they want a blessing from God. He said even these people would have returned to them what they had given because it was a Universal Law, found in every religion and verified by science. He went on to say that the law also worked when you do harm to others that harm was also coming back. Then he got to the question of when. Reverend Rainey said that according to our Christian beliefs, a person would reap everything they had sewn before they left this earth. I was thinking well, that’s not an answer. Then he did for me what many adults hadn’t, he treated me as an equal. He said that there were many other religions and they all had this belief, but the difference in how it applied to them all came down to my question. “Some people believe that they will come back in another life form through reincarnation and some believe that they are working out their ancestor’s wrongs or rights,” he said. He added that he personally believed that the timing of our reaping was in accordance to our faith and our wisdom; the more wisdom you have the quicker things come back. “No reason to reap what you’ve sewn if you can’t understand it. “But when you do, oh boy that’s when it’s gonna hit you.” He said.

I thought about this answer for many months. I had already being doing chores for the older members of the church and in my community. I would go to the store for them or do small repairs. I would sew clothing for someone whose eyesight and dexterity wasn’t what it had been. I would clean and replace light bulbs or paint a room that needed to be painted. I did all of these things for nothing and I always felt good about doing them. I believed then and I do now that the feeling of joy that came from giving was all I needed. Whenever I worked this way, my mind became clearer and I could see my future.

After Rev. Rainey told me about the association between wisdom and the reaping time I began to seek wisdom as a reward. I continued to do for others without seeking something in return and found that what I desired most was always present.

Yesterday, I had one of those moments of joy that cannot truly be captured in words.

Back in November, I had the opportunity to speak for a company called ECOLAB. They make wonderful products for cleaning and sanitizing. The company is mindful of the earth’s resources as well as the resources of their clients; hospitals, food service, hotels and hospitality. Back in November when I spoke to their leadership team, I was moved by their work ethic and commitment to the company. But what truly gave me pause was the heart that these folks had for each other, their clients and the people who actually do the cleaning work. They spoke of making sure that their products were safe and harmless but would also make the workers job easier.

Now, if you’ve been reading this blog, you know that I did cleaning work as a child. You also know that every now and then I like to get my clean on. I am proud to say that I come from a family of cleaning people. We have all done this kind of work at some time in our lives, so you can only imagine how amazing it was to see people who supply the products and equipment with so much care and commitment.

While researching the company, I found that they had designed a new cleaning cart complete with its own pressure washer and vacuum system. It has a four hour battery and moves around with ease. I told the audience that I had shown a picture of it to my family and we all decided what we could do with it if we had one. Some of you may be rolling your eyes about someone having so much love for cleaning, but I know that there are others who can understand where I am coming from.

I will get to the point, yesterday, Chad and Gregory, representatives from ECOLAB, drove four hours to my house to surprise me with an ECOLAB cleaning caddie.

I am still in joy. My sister Chris has decided to put lights on it. She was so overjoyed that she is planning to volunteer to clean for the small businesses in the area. Last night, I kept getting out of bed to go and look at it.

Here’s what I think, whatever we do, always comes back. It may not come back from the person you give to, but it comes back. It may not come right away, but it comes back.

Many years ago, when I was cleaning for old folks and doing the best I could for those in need, I never sought a reward. But rewards have come back. They come in many ways, from all kinds of people. You never know where or how, but they come back.

Yesterday, I got the most wonderful cleaning cart ever, and I got it from people who are proud of doing work for folks they may never know or even meet; they do it, because it’s the right thing to do.

During this season of getting and getting, understand that you will always get what you give, but do it with the wisdom of knowing that it’s the right thing to do.

·         How can you surprise someone with what they would truly want?

·         How can you touch the life of someone with what you already know how to do?

·         DO IT.

What goes around comes around.

Bertice Berry,PhD

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