Before I start this story, I want to make something clear. I’m not pushing an agenda or telling anyone how they should believe. Or not believe. I want to share a simple story. And religion plays a part in it. I considered removing the religious parts of the story. But decided against it.

In an earlier email, I promised you that what I write will be real and it will be authentic. To remove those references would violate that promise. It would dishonor these events. This is something I will not do.

So please. Enjoy the story for what it’s worth.

Last week, I talked about my book which is being released.

People are going to say I’m crazy. That it won’t work.

But I don’t care.

She grew up on a country farm. Long before televisions existed. When NBC, ABC and CBS were nothing more than radio stations. At night, you entertained by singing and playing musical instruments.

For her, she entertained her family and guests by playing the piano.

She wasn’t seeking fame or fortune. No Grammy’s. She was a simple country girl who just loved to play.

Twice a week, she went to church. She felt this need, this drive to share her talents. One day, she worked up the courage to ask the pastor if she could play for the church. An offer that was quickly accepted. And so she played. Week after week. Month after month. Year after year.

That is until she broke a rule. She got a divorce.

Undeterred, she went to another church which allowed her to play the piano. And she did. Month after month. Year after year. That is when she met a kind, gentle man. They fell in love and got married.

Not too long later, they had a son. And twice a week, the three of them went to church and she would play. Something her son was very proud of.

One day, the father and mother said that they were going to find another church. The little boy was upset. Hurt. His friends were at that church. He didn’t want to lose his friends!

When asked, the mother explained that some people felt that a divorced and remarried woman shouldn’t be allowed to play the piano. Finally, the rumblings forced the pastor into action. He asked her to step down from playing.

Stupid church,” was the intelligent response from the five year old.

She said that it wasn’t their place to judge other people. They didn’t run the church. They didn’t make the rules. They may not like the church’s rules but they would respect them.

Not too long later, the family found another small church of about 25 people. It was a new church. Just starting. They accepted the family for who they were. Imperfections and all. This time, there was no issue with her being able to play.

One summer day, the family car tootled down that same, tree-lined road on the way to church. The 6 year old boy stared out the window, day-dreaming away.

Something occurred to him. She didn’t receive any money. No salary. No pay. Nor did she ask for any. The father had passed away. Their income was social security and veteran survivor benefits. They could certainly use the money.

The boy asked “Mom, why do you play the piano?”

She stayed quiet for a minute, reflecting. Then said says, “Because God gave me a gift. And I always felt that it’s my duty to share that talent and play.”

And play she did. Month after month. Year after year. Decade after decade.

For nearly 60 years, she climbed then descended the stairs of the stage before she stepped down one last time about 10 years ago. It was time for her to retire.

For her years of unwavering dedication, the church gave her the largest, most beautiful bouquet of flowers. The weight alone nearly made her topple over. For almost 10 minutes, the only sound that could be heard was the applause of the entire congregation, about 350 people, while standing on their feet.

Seeing what she did, how she viewed her talent really inspired me. Over 60 years of just giving. Sharing her talent.

When she told me what the church had done for her retirement, I got a bit choked up. I had always been proud of my mom. But this made my heart swell.

Her actions have had a profound impact on me.

For myself, I love to write. I consider myself fortunate that I can blend two great passions of mine, writing and real estate, into my business.

Last week, I announced that my book was coming out. A collaboration between myself and other real estate innovators who believe as I believe. Who accepted me for who I am.

Earlier this year, I wrote that my goal was to bake philanthropy into the DNA of my business. I wanted to be able to give back more.

Tony Robbins agrees with me.

“Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more.” – Tony Robbins

I’m giving the book away.

On one condition.

For each person who receives a copy, I’m asking that they donate $5 to a charity of their choice.

That’s it.


There are people out there that are hurting. Trying to have some semblance of a normal life. And while $5 may not be a lot to you, it could be the world to someone who is hurting.

Pay It Forward. And when they do, I’m asking them to shoot me a quick email letting me know which charity they donated to.

I know there are some naysayers out there. People are going to tell me that I’m crazy. That it won’t work.

Perhaps. If the readers don’t donate $5, I won’t judge.

I want people to get value out of the book. Enjoy it. Be inspired by it.

There’s a chance to do some good. It’s my duty to try.

Books start shipping next week!

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