The idea of investing in people has been inserting itself into my thoughts lately. I can’t seem to get away from it. It’s something I wish others would have done for me, someone other than my parents that is. Most people just don’t think that way, we’re all so busy with the things of life. Even when we think we are investing in others, it is really more like we would in the stockmarket or a business venture. We want a return on that investment, an earthly return.
I keep thinking how important it is though that we view this investment in people differently and with huge rose-colored glasses. I’m pep talking myself here. I’m sure you’re already perfect at this.
I decided to do a little online research to find out what others were saying about it. I fully expected to run into numerous articles on the subject, especially from within the Christian community. There were a few generic pieces but the jist of those were really based on our typical definition of investing. You know the one where I put money into someone’s ideas or dreams and then look for what I get out of it.
That is not at all the way I have been thinking about investing.
I was actually disappointed at what little I found that spoke more about the person being invested in rather than what return the investor received.
In fact, these were the typical quotes I found:
They just make me shake my head. Does anyone else think the first quote is ridiculous? The way I read it no one could possibly be the first to invest. And really, people who need to be invested in the most, likely have no means or idea how to invest in anyone else just yet. A generous, selfless investment will likely change everything for them though.
And then after more searching I found this –
Giving should be entered into in just the same way as investing. Giving is investing. – John D. Rockefeller
Yes! That’s what I’m talking about! I may not have this idea completely formulated but I’m guessing Rockefeller knew a thing or two about money and he seems to have articulated my starting point.
When I looked up the definition of invest I found this:
Look at #4!!! And 5, and 6, and 7. Now that is the kind of investing I want to do. Life-changing, life-giving investing. The type of investing that encourages another to hope again. I can’t count how many times I’ve needed just that and I’m sad to tell you how few people around me responded positively to my need.
This is my challenge to myself and to you if you’re willing and not quite perfect at this yet. Let’s live life looking for the people who need hope and generously invest in them.