The most interesting and heart-touching story from the book - Family Wisdom by Robin Sharma.
Born into poverty, she grew up in a tiny house that she never left except to go up the street to buy groceries and to visit her church. She made her living washing other people's dirty laundry, carefully saving the nickels and the dimes and the quarters that were offered to her return. She never learned how to drive and she never got married – although she did say to a reporter when she was in her late eighties that she was "still looking for a good man."
Oseola lived a simple, decent and frugal life, dutifully putting aside the money that she earned day after day, week after week as the decades slipped away.
One day, at the age of eighty-seven, she walked into her local bank and was greeted by a banker who asked her whether she had an idea how much she had accumulated as a result of these small daily contributions she had been making over the course of her life. When she indicated that she had no idea, she smiled and informed her that over one-quarter of a million dollars sat in her bank account.
Sensing that Oseola had no concept of how much money that was, the banker took out ten dimes and placed them in the counter. "These ten dimes represent your money, Oseola. What will you do with them? She pointed out to the first dims and vowed to give it to the church. The next three dimes were reserved for her much-loved nieces and nephews. And then a lovely smile came to Oseola's face as she said that the remaining dimes were to be used for something very special.
One month later, the local university in Oseola's hometown received a check from her for $150,000.00, with a request that it be used to set up a 'scholarship-fund' to help poor students fulfill their dreams. Oseola was honored by presidents and prime ministers and even received an honorary doctorate from Harvard University.
Julian's alma mater though all the hoopla, she maintained that she still wanted to live out her life in a simple and principled way. But she did have one dream – to see the first recipient of the scholarship she had created grace the graduation stage. But she confided that she never expected that dream to be realized given her advanced age. One month before Oseola died, however, the first recipient of her scholarship walked across the platform to receive her reward.
After Oseola passed away, a reporter called that young scholarship winner and asked her for a comment on the death of her benefactor. The student offered this response: "heaven couldn't have gotten a better angel. She was an inspiration, a blessing, a treasure to the entire Earth."
Note: "look at the life of Oseola McCarty," she washed people's dirty clothes to make end meet. She lived in a tiny home and was unknown to the world. And yet through her small daily acts of contribution –saving those coins over all those years for a worthy cause – she blessed the world. "What a glorious legacy this woman had left."
All we need to do to leave a meaningful mark on the world is focus on performing small acts of greatness each and every day. "When you do this, your legacy will take care of itself."