How to Live Beyond Yourself

I watched Laurie Vanderpool hold a severely disabled young boy in her arms and proclaim that one day he would run and jump and turn somersaults.

She had me at the way she smothered him with hugs and kisses. Her love was stunningly holy and absolute.

I wanted to change my life at that exact moment.

Have you ever thought about quitting your job and rebooting your life?

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live beyond every thing you have ever imagined.

Let me introduce you to the people behind LiveBeyond.

I first met Dr. David Vanderpool about a year ago when he came to speak at Belmont University. We learned about his commitment to health care in disaster relief through Mobile Medical Disaster Relief.

At the time, he and his wife, Laurie, were launching LiveBeyond. After working in Haiti since the 2010 earthquake, Dr. Vanderpool became convinced that he needed to move beyond disaster relief.

He and his wife decided to live beyond their comfort in the wealthiest nation in the world so they might help people in Haiti live beyond the oppression of hunger, thirst, disease, and neglect.

In May 2013 he closed out his medical practice and moved to live full time at the new LiveBeyond base in Thomazeau, Haiti.

He has an inspiring vision.

They recently finished a guest house in a secure compound that has clean water and sleeps sixty people. They are well prepared to receive and support medical and relief teams.

They recently broke ground on a forty bed hospital that will have operating rooms, dental clinic, maternal care, general medical care, and health and nutrition resources.

Already, he and his team have a growing and developed maternal health care program that works with nearly 200 mothers and children at a time. They support an orphanage and elementary school. They also have ESL programs.

Soon to follow are a church and a residential school for 8-12 graders.

In addition, they are developing a demonstration farm to help local farmers improve crop production.

Clearly, their vision extends far beyond themselves.

Not everyone should sell everything he or she owns and move to the poorest country in the western hemisphere. However, we should listen closely to the call on our lives to hear how we are supposed to live beyond ourselves.

I visited the Vanderpools and LiveBeyond last week and I was deeply impressed by their vision, but, more importantly, by their genuine love for the people of Thomazeau.

Visit their website and learn more about their work.

Perhaps you might find a place in the work of LiveBeyond by participating in a trip to Thomazeau. Maybe you will feel moved to support them financially.

I want to challenge you to think deeply about how you may live beyond yourself.

What can you leave behind to move further ahead into the lives of others in need?

Where can you change your priorities to spend time helping people less fortunate than yourself?

How do you need to change your values to be able to give away more to others?

When can you begin to live beyond yourself?