In the spring of 1983 I was invited by Rev. Robert Schuller to present a financial seminar at the Crystal Cathedral in Anaheim, CA. As he welcomed the attendees he asked them an interesting question, “What great thing would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?” I still marvel at the uniqueness and subtlety of that question. Over the years I have tried to deal with the question while embracing the phenomenon of “Possibility.” The conclusion I came to was that I wanted to become a “change maker” and help other people in this world become “better off.”
I believe that Project C.U.R.E. became the vehicle that allowed over fifteen thousand of us as volunteers to help tens of thousands of people in at least 123 different countries become better off. People who were attracted to Project C.U.R.E. ended up with their lives changed for the good. I consider myself fortunate because over the years I was able to see the changes in the recipient hospitals, clinics and even entire healthcare systems wherever Project C.U.R.E. was involved. I vividly remember my dear friend, Dr. Vilmar Trombeta, the head of the University in Campinas, Brazil. “Jim,” he said, “you have brought millions of dollars of medical goods and donated them to our University and to our hospital. But, do you know what you brought most to us? You brought ‘hope’ to us.”
Dr. Trombeta went on to explain, “When you first came to visit us all of our people were excited, but they were secretly skeptical. Other Americans had been here and promised things and then never returned.” He continued, “but after the first container arrived and all of us saw that it was for real, our whole University and hospital changed. Even our staff meetings changed. Instead of our department heads and leaders getting together and complaining because we couldn’t do this or that, they started seeing ways that things could be done. Everything miraculously changed. If Project C.U.R.E. has enough faith in us to give us over a million dollars of medical goods, then we can surely figure out how to get things done with what we have.”
Then, of course, Project C.U.R.E. had brought incredible change to sick and dying moms and dads and kids all over the world, like the ten-year-old girl on the Serengeti in Tanzania, Africa, whose life was miraculously saved. Project C.U.R.E. was not the change, but it had become an “Agent of Change.”And change and miracles have not just happened on the other side of oceans. Some of the most dramatic changes associated with Project C.U.R.E. have taken place in the USA . . . in Denver, Houston, Phoenix, Nashville, Chicago, and eleven other operational cities.
Individuals have had a chance to express themselves in love and caring. The compassion that was bottled up inside of them did not have to be physically taken to a foreign country to be expressed and realized. They had the opportunity to do something for a hurting world in a tangible way right near where they lived. Project C.U.R.E. has been the vehicle that has carried those people’s feelings of love and compassion to the other side of the world and effected change. And it all seemed so impossible at the beginning.
The question Robert Schuller asked the people in Anaheim is equally relevant today. I would like to challenge you today with the very same question, “What great thing would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?” It is very possible that the dream could become a reality in your life if you would dare to act upon it.