Why is everyone smiling? I noticed this moment going through footage of a seminar in the Georgia Dome a few years back. I had asked a few minutes before, “Who could use some cheering up?” This brave soul raised her hand and I welcomed her up onto the stage in front of 30,000.
I asked the audience if they would like to help me cheer her up. I invited all there to stand and give a complete stranger a standing ovation. Like hundreds of times before, all over the world, in schools, in businesses, during public events, the amazing, beautiful, human spirit within rises and everyone cheers and sends encouragement to a fellow person.
When everyone sits down I acknowledge the amazing outpouring that just came from the audience. Then I turn to my volunteer on stage and ask, “Did you feel that wave wash onto the stage?” Without exception, they nod in the affirmative.
Then I reach into my pocket and say, “I have one more thing to cheer you up, here’s a hundred dollar bill, this is yours.” That’s the moment captured in this picture.
Everyone is smiling. Everyone in the arena shares in the moment of giving, shares in the moment of lifting someone in a moment of need.
A few minutes later after she returns to her seat I wrap up with this thought. Carol is feeling better. But not only is Carol feeling better, who else is feeling better? The audience responds, “WE ARE!”
And I conclude, “Isn’t that amazing, you can’t give kindness away, it’s always returned. If you’re ever feeling down or depressed or lonely, go do something for someone.”