As you are active in blessing others, they find their burdens easier to bear

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” With these immortal words, St. John sublimates Jesus’ recognition of the very depth of the love we would seek to achieve. Pure love, untainted by doubt, undisturbed by worldly consideration or thought of personal gain, represents a pinnacle of achievement. In the wide sense, it can be important to see others as our brothers and sisters, and as our friends. St. Philip Neri said, “Cast yourself with confidence into the arms of God; and be very sure of this: that if He wants anything of you, He will fit you for your work and give you the strength to do it.” When we look with the eyes of Spirit, could not a part of our “work” be that of loving service to others?

When we desire to be a blessing, we find that there are many ways in which we can bless others. We can give material goods to others, and we can also offer them the benefit of our experience. People who have faced and overcome challenges with alcohol and drugs often involve themselves in helping others who are experiencing similar difficulties. They understand the value of overcoming the problem. In every area of the human experience, we may find those precious ones who are able and willing to be a blessing to others.

The exquisite spiritual poetry of a fourteenth-century poet Kabir may stir our souls if we listen with the heart: “Suppose you scrub your ethical skin until it shines, but inside there is no music, then what? Mohammed’s son pores over words, and points out this and that, but if his chest is not soaked dark with love, then what? The Yogi comes along in his famous orange. But if inside he is colorless, then what?” Does this not speak of the service of blessings? A well‑known building contractor begins his day with a prayer like this: “Father, you are the Master Architect. Let me never ‘hammer and saw’ so loudly that You can’t get through to discuss Your blueprints with me. My business is Your business. Work through me to build good houses and a good life. Help me be a blessing to all I meet.” Many people find that they receive more benefit from being a blessing than from being blessed. Oftentimes, being a blessing requires nothing more than a word of encouragement and hope to someone who may be experiencing situations that bring discouragement and despair.

E. Stanley Jones tells of seeing a little frail flower growing in the vast ruins of ancient Babylon. He wondered how a little flower, so frail that he could crush it in his fingers, could have survived while a vast empire founded on military power had perished. As he contemplated the mystery before him, he realized it was because the flower followed the ways of nature’s gentleness, but the nation perished by its militaristic doctrine. He concluded that love is the answer; light is a continuing need, and each one of us can serve as a channel of blessing.

The English poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote, “God’s gifts put man’s best dreams to shame.” Since God has given us great potential, it can be important to learn to discover more of his gifts by making them spiritually active in our life. One way to do this can be to pass along the service of our talents and abilities to others with our love and blessings. Divine ideas can become more real to us and active within us when we share them with our friends, neighbors, and family.

The air we breathe is necessary to keep us alive, but we must continually breathe it out so we can breathe fresh air back into our lungs. God gives us his love, which we can keep in action by breathing it out to others, thus making room in our hearts for a fresh supply of love. Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam, wrote as follows: “No man is a true believer unless he desireth for his brother that which he desireth for himself.” We must share our gifts to provide opportunity for increase in our life. For example, when knowledge is shared, it increases for those concerned. When we share with others our substance and our blessings, they can increase for us and for others as the loaves and fishes increased for Jesus and the multitude. When we share garden seed with nature by sowing it in the ground, the unfolding harvest brings increase. When we speak kind words, kindness can be multiplied in our lives.

The law of blessedness may indicate that a real part of our life’s work may be to help other’s burdens become easier to bear. Have we not each experienced—at some time in our life—a problem situation, a personal challenge, or possibly confusion? And perhaps we were the recipient of caring and compassion from another. As we humble ourselves to the multitude of expressions of the Spirit that sing to us each moment, as we come to appreciate and love the inner richness of our lives, we may become the blessing that adds the “flavor” to our life. What a wonderful awareness to know that as we open ourselves to rich blessings, those blessings flow through the channel of our love to bless and help others. Let’s pause and give thanks for being blessed and for the opportunity to be a blessing.