One of my colleagues participated in the London Marathon in April this year.

The London Marathon is a long-distance running event, one of the worlds largest. This year was the 32nd London Marathon that took place.

You have to be pretty committed to run this event because it spans 42.195 kilometres (26 miles and 385 yards) and getting accepted to race in this event is not easy as there are always more applications for entry than there are places available to compete.

I am writing this story on the blog today to
emphasise the difference between being interested in something versus being passionate, and that once your passion or Gift is ignited, it becomes very contagious.

One of the marathon runners in London was Claire Squires a 30 year old woman who had set up the website, “Just Giving” to raise money for a charity called the Samaritans. Samaritans is a charity that provides confidential emotional support for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those which may lead to suicide.

Claire set out to run and raise funds for the Samaritans in honour of her brother Grant, who died of a drug overdose in 2001, aged 25.

Before the race she had raised £500. Claire was running when she fell to the ground on Birdcage Walk, near Buckingham Palace. She collapsed less than a mile from the finishing line on April 22. Claire was rushed to hospital by ambulance where she was later pronounced dead.

As the shock of this news got around London, thousands of well-wishers left donations for the charity on Claire’s website totalling more than £1 million.

The lesson:

I have always believed that each of us has a Gift, and what we do with it, is our gift back to the world.  In Claire’s case, it was serving a charity to prevent other people suffering the same fate as her brother. She ran as far as she could, before collapsing, and when her body could not go on, her passion, energy, soul and focus continued by sparking generosity in others to add to the gift she left behind by making donations reaching        £1 million to charity. Who would have thought that her last breath consisted of helping so many people who will now benefit from the effort and work she did.

William James said: Let everything you do be done as if it makes a difference.

Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later.  Og Mandino

“If the Last Hour strikes and finds you carrying a sapling to the grove for planting, go ahead and plant it.”  Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him)

My prayer is that we each identify our Gift, sharpen it, add to it, deliver it and contribute to ourselves and others mentally, financially, spiritually, emotionally and physically louder than any voice of doubt that stops us, so that when we do pass on, we pass on with a gift back to the world, being of assistance to at least one other person, just as Claire did.

Trust that little voice in your head that says ‘Wouldn’t it be interesting if…’; And then do it. Duane Michals

To the blessings in your Gift.