It all adds up

I think that a healthy seed ready to be placed in a good piece of earth is so much more powerful than the biggest basket of fruit. The lifespan of food ebbs and ends in hours as the energy it yields to the eater is used up, whether it was eaten by giants or by a baby. But a seed is the foundation for feeding countless people for as long as the tree continues to fruit under the hand of a caretaker, and its seeds continue to be planted in more good grounds.

The human race started with one man and one woman. There was the first Coca Cola bottle made. And the first Estee Lauder perfume (please allow me to celebrate this lady). This is why you should protect and nurture every bit of talent, gift, and item in your hand. Including coins from your daily transactions; used clothes and shoes that others can wear, and leftover food that can nourish someone – even if you are full.  It all adds up.

When Jesus finished feeding the thousands of people, he said ‘let nothing be wasted’. That is how the twelve baskets were gathered up and taken home. A keen sense of the value of ‘all you got’ is critical to living life well and effective leadership.

Too often, we lose the value in the very thing that was meant to make us significant and bring great returns to us – a  feature that is unique to us and which may be discounted because of its unusual nature. My strong sense from watching barrier breakers and frontier pushers is that there is awesome value in originality and authenticity. And believe it or not, validity arises from authenticity. That is why copying is an intellectual misdeed called plagiarism.

Each one of us ought to be adding to the landscape of life from a stock that we bring. Look carefully and find those features, ideas and imaginations that are uniquely yours. Do not despise them or imagine that they are not legitimate. They are. Deploy them to push your life forward. One critical feature of effective leadership is the ability to use the cards we hold to push the barriers down, and refuse to feel stuck in the known. Be original. Everyone else is taken.

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