Our first load of donated medical goods was delivered into Brazil, in 1987. We mark that as the official starting point of Project C.U.R.E.
By then I could see why I had been set on a course that had taken me into lesser-developed countries. That would be my work venue for the future. And I could see why I had been introduced to top leaders and influential people in countries of North America, Africa, and South America. Those were the people I would be working with for a long time to come on behalf of the less fortunate. I couldn’t necessarily see all that was taking place at the same time it was happening. But as soon as the first ocean-going cargo container loads were sent into Brazil the pieces of the mosaic started coming together, forming a dazzling, multi-faceted picture that caught the light of eternity.
I also began to see what an incredible difference the donated medical supplies had made. It was too soon to judge the effect the donations would have on the hurting constituents of Brazil, but I could see what we had gotten hold of was dynamite. The energy level of the entire university medical campus, where we had begun sending medical goods, as well as Dr. Neves’s little clinic in Mesquite, had jumped to unbelievable heights. And we had just started.
In my quiet times, I would reflect on what had happened since I had started the adventure of relinquishment. I was not lying awake at nights any more worrying what I would do if I made a miscalculation and ended up losing all my personal wealth; we had given it away. I was not concerned any longer that my personal value might be tied to some show of wealth. I was amazed that I was no longer being driven by the addiction of personal accumulation. I didn’t need to put together one more, yet bigger, business deal. My motivations were being profoundly changed.
I could now see what I would be doing for the rest of my life: I would be taking the areas of my life where I had strong affinities and abilities, and spend my time using those to help other people who were less advantaged. I would not only give away my personal accumulation of wealth but I would also give away myself.
The phrase kept coming to me that I was now building a “business of goodness.”
It seemed to me that the door was wide open for a smaller, leaner international organization to become excellent in the particular niche of improving worldwide health care. Small agencies by themselves could not end world poverty or resurrect broken health care systems, but they could be powerfully effective in meeting the desperate needs of the poor and sick by providing hope and new opportunities to needy medical institutions and discouraged doctors.
Around this time, I also began discovering something else—something personal: I was beginning to sense a deep feeling of joy and fulfillment. As I began to see the pieces of the desired mosaic coming together, I experienced a strange new energy and creativity. I told Anna Marie that I was becoming the “happiest man in the world.”