According to Oxford Languages and Google, investment is the action or process of capitalizing money for profit or material result or a thing that is worth buying because it may be profitable or useful in the future.
Seven out of 10 friends of mine already invested in life insurance. It assures that when an emergency comes, everything is settled.
It also means putting your money in something that would produce double or more than what was spent. It's purchasing assets rather than liabilities.
Gold, business, land - these are the most common investments one can secure. As time goes by, their value increases.
Investments, however, don't only work that way. Investment is an act of devoting time, effort, or energy to a particular undertaking with the expectation of a worthwhile result.
I was caught off-guard. I made an investment and I was 100% totally unaware! My discovery of the investment I made started here: as I stayed in the hospital for a week to be a "watcher" to my father who was admitted due to hypokalaemia - or low potassium - I realized that I had intuitively made investments in the past.
When we think of investments, we always think of it as something that is monetary. We think of thousands or millions. But at this point, I discovered that investments do not only work that way.
What did I invest?
I invested in friendships.
"And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, especially to those who are of the household of faith" (Galatians Chapter 6 verses 9 to 10).
I didn't think choosing to pray, connect, and respond to and for other people would become an invested seed that would bear enormous fruits.
Prayer is a gift
Praying for the drivers I encounter along the road, the sick I see on Facebook, the random people I meet outside - that actually became one of the practices I do.
Receiving prayer requests from people is also one thing I love. I love to pray for them because I highly believe that prayer is the most priceless gift I could ever give.
Connection is a love language
We can be so comfortable socializing with people online that we forget the value of quality time. There's a long list of things that can be done online but not as well as the things that we can do face to face.
Time spent with family, friends, church community, and others, is still incomparable. It will not only build stronger ties but will help us disseminate the power of the Source (God) we are plugged into.
Response is the action
To respond means to be there and do something. We can respond through words and actions.
Calling a friend or being a helping hand is a response we all need. It's viral kindness that will make a happy, blessed life.
The Bible says, "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing" (1 Thessalonians chapter 5 verse 11), and I found it out firsthand that being sincere to other people can yield amazing results.
The gain from my investment
While we were at the hospital, I only mentioned two things to my friends: my father's situation and that we weren't allowed to go anywhere outside the gate.
The problem here is that we don't have close relatives near the area to attend to our needs such as food, water, and other necessary things that are not available inside.
I was clueless that my friend (Ceej), who is one province away from the hospital, communicated with our friend (Jai) who happened to be living near the hospital where my father was admitted. They made it possible to provide us with whatever we need.
Every meal time, Jai sent us healthy meals. Those are special "lutong bahay" or "ilokano" foods that would make my father always say, "What a tasty meal!" He gained his strength that fast because they also sent us fruits, vitamins, and even extra snacks making sure that we were comfortable and well.
Never underestimate how God works in friendship circles
I cried thinking how carefully and beautifully God orchestrated friendships. All I did was become true to people and remember them in my prayers. I make time for them and I respond to their needs as much as I can.
While I was thoughtful about this hospital scenario, I said to my Lord, "You are so mindful of me. You sent me these people, I am sure of it." Even before this emergency happened to my father, God already knew that my backup or support system is strong.
What do you invest in?
It can be money, gold, land - but as for me, I unconsciously invested in something that lasts for a lifetime ... or better yet, eternity.
I never expected anything in return for the love or friendship I am giving to other people. I freely gave it. But by the time I needed help, God used this invested friendship to bear love and kindness in return.
Whenever I recall this wonderful experience, I also remember Jesus. I am certain this is what would Jesus do. He would help. He would love. And He'd make people say, "I know it's You, God."