Do It Anyway!


It was ten years ago, and my wife and I in concert with others who cared for him were trying to help a young man come out of drug addiction. We let him stay with us for a short while and helped him find a job. We thought things were looking up. My wife and I had an old car that we were planning on selling and while we knew we could make more money selling it to someone else, we offered it to him and at large discount. He gave us a downpayment and we agreed to a payment plan.

That was on a Wednesday. Two nights later we were awoken in the middle of the night by our buzzer. (We lived in an apartment building.) The stern voice on the other end of the line identified himself as a police officer and demanded to come up. When he got up the stairs he asked me if I still owned that car. In my sleep deprived state I said yes, and then remembered that no, we had sold the car two days before.

It turned out that the young man we had sold the car to had used it to steal gas. I had trusted him to transfer the title, something he had not done and so the car was traced back to me.

After explaining to the officer what had happened, and showing him the bill of sale we had drawn up he left.

And we were left feeling used.

Sometimes that happens when you help people.  Sometimes it’s not easy to help. Sometimes you know that if you help you are putting yourself on the line and you may get burned.

Paul wrote in Galatians:

So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. 10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith. (6:9-10)

I was grateful to Dr. Kent Keith for giving me permission to print his poem, The Paradoxical Commandments of Leadership, in my book Completely Reckless. The poem is a challenge to love and move forward in life in spite of the obstacles you face:

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot
down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

Along this same line of pushing into touch things Anyway, Ben Folds Five recently released a song recently called Do It Anyway. They then did the most awesome thing ever and used the Fraggles in the video!

It takes the idea of the poem and sets it to music. (Fair warning, the song takes the concept to areas I would not. I did not write the song…)

Is there an area you know you should be doing good this week but area afraid of being burned? Do it anyway!