By Faryal Khatri
After a whirlwind type day of work and board meetings I slumped into my seat just minutes before the program began, gasping for air and slightly disheveled from having pushed my way through traffic and running from my car to the Indiana Landmarks building. I was not familiar with Lynne Twist or her work, but I’ve been attending the Thomas H. Lake Lecture series for the past few years and had no doubt this year would be just as inspiring and thought-provoking as previous years.
Although there are several takeaways that can be discussed, there is one sentence that keeps playing in my mind: what you appreciate appreciates. It comes from the Principle of Sufficiency, which states, “If you let go of trying to get more of what you don’t really need, it opens up oceans of energy to love, appreciate, nourish, foster, and share what you already have. In turn, what you already have expands and grows. That expansion is what you use to give, serve, and contribute.”
It made me pause and realize that I needed to change the glasses through which I was viewing the world. Moments before while I was rushing to make it to the lecture I kept thinking to myself, “if only I had more time to squeeze in everything I need to do,” rather than appreciating I have a wonderful job and serve on the board of the Center for Interfaith Cooperation, both of which empower me to uplift our community. Once I started appreciating what I have and what I had accomplished during the day, I felt rejuvenated.
I was reminded of a verse from the holy Qur’an in which God promises, “If you are grateful, I will surely give you more and more.” (14:7) After reflecting on this verse, I recognized that God has given me gifts and talents. When I appreciate my skills and talents, I know that He will guide me to continuously improve them and, in turn, I can better utilize my skills and talents to serve the community. This is exactly what the Principle of Sufficiency tells us – when you love, appreciate, nourish, foster, and share what you already have. In turn, what you already have expands and grows. That expansion is what you use to give, serve, and contribute. What you appreciate appreciates.
Faryal M. Khatri is a community activist and leader. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in philanthropic studies from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. She serves as the communications and e-philanthropy specialist at St. Vincent Hospital Foundation and a board member of the Center for Interfaith Cooperation .