There has been a lot spoken about the life of Nelson Mandela in the weeks following his death. His legacy is being compared with the likes of Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. One thing is certain; on the world stage, Nelson Mandela was big.
I was familiar with his imprisonment and how he forgave his captors as well as him being the first black president of South Africa. What I didn’t fully understand about this great man was the degree to which he was loved by the people of South Africa. He was held in high regard by them and often referred to as “the father of the nation”. In the hearts of the South African people, and people around the world, he wasn’t just big, he was a giant.
Wouldn’t you like to be a giant like that? I would! What a great legacy it would be to have had such a positive impact and influence on so many people around the world. Nelson Mandela was a unique figure in history. People such as him don’t come along very often. There are few people that have, or will, leave a similar mark on the world stage.
But don’t lose heard, because there’s good news! Every one of us has the capacity to be a giant. We can be giants in our families, our communities, and our circles of influence.
So how do we go about being giants? What does being a giant in our circles of influence look like? Here are some actions you can take toward becoming a giant to those around you:
- Love those around you and those closest to you. Don’t just say you love them; show them with your actions and how you live your life. If you’re not sure what love in action looks like, check out 1 Corinthians 13.
- Be a “value add” in the lives of people. Encourage others. Listen to them. Help them out when you can. Forgive them when it’s needed, or seek forgiveness when it’s needed.
- Be present. When you’re with someone close to you, let your actions show how important they are to you. Turn the cell phone off and focus on the interaction with them. Remove distractions and pay attention to what they’re saying. Ask questions. It’s a big deal when someone you care about decides to spend some of their time with you. Their time, like yours, is valuable. Honor them by being present.
Wouldn’t we all like to know that we were a significant part of the lives of those closest to us, and that we made a difference to them? We’re all capable of being giants to those around us. We need only chose to do so and follow that decision up with consistent action that shows those around us that we value them.
Start becoming a giant today. You’ll feel great from the positive impacts this will have on your relationships, and others will be blessed by having a giant in their lives.