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Clients First: The Two Word Miracle by JoAnn Callaway, Joseph Callaway

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Giving Money

But what about real things, like money, houses, and cars? Since money can buy all these goodies, let’s just talk money. How can you have money if you give it away? We aren’t talking about a simple smile here. We are talking about real, hard-earned dollars. This is where the riddle breaks down. If you keep giving away money, you’re going to go broke.

Let me tell you about the biggest giveaway we ever had, and you decide. Every year we send out Christmas ornaments to our clients. These are handmade from bread dough in the shape of a front door, and JoAnn designs a new one each year. One year, the ladies who produce these treasures were unable to work, and we needed an alternative. Our granddaughter suggested we help Habitat for Humanity build a house and make the donation in the name of “the Clients of Those Callaways.” This sounds innocent enough, but one thing led to another, and we ended up donating $70,000 for a whole house. On the day we cut the check, I had to move some money around, which included not paying the full amount on our Visa account and transferring money from our personal savings. I remember telling myself over and over that this was a good thing to do. I’m sure there were sweat stains on the check where I signed.

We were apprehensive about how our clients would react. We sent our clients the usual cards, but instead of an ornament, we inserted a note saying that they had participated in the gift of a house to charity. We received a handful of sweet ...

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