“Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as you ever can.”
Within one week’s time and during various and unrelated occasions, the message of serving others has been brought to my attention.
The first came last Monday while visiting with my sister about a conference she recently attended. The keynote speaker, a former United States President, reminded his audience that making a difference in only one life is significant, and our service doesn’t have to be monumental either. In other words, we don’t have to travel to the ends of the earth, volunteer endless hours of our time or start a non-profit organization in order to make a positive difference in a life.
A few days later while watching the evening news, an anchor was asked what he was giving up for Lent. He responded by saying that he wasn’t giving up anything. Rather, his focus would be on others, as his goal was to pay one kind act to a stranger, everyday.
Finally, upon waking up this morning I randomly picked up Rick Warren’s new and expanded version of A Purpose Driven Life. I wasn’t looking for anything in particular, rather, I simply felt called to grab it off of my night stand. Sure enough, the first page I turned to was the chapter on serving others.
I wish I could say that the series of service reminders was pure coincidence, but I’d be naive to ignore this important message.
One of the lines from a Purpose Driven Life suggests that we miss service opportunities because we lack spontaneity. Shamefully, I fall into this category, as my day and time is structured in a way that if something interrupts my specific plan and timeline, I get frustrated. With this attitude, I am certainly not creating any space to serve or help others. In addition, I tend to think in terms of grandiose proportions, and if I can’t donate hours of my time or feel that I am contributing to the masses, then my time is not worth it and I am not making a difference. Ridiculous? Yes! As we all know, this could not be further from the truth.
Opportunities to make a difference for others comes in a variety of ways, and each of us are called to serve how we can. Sometimes it’s a smile, while other times it’s a meal, our money, our time or something as simple yet personal as making eye contact and saying hello to a total stranger. Service comes in all shapes and sizes, and what’s important is that we do not diminish our ability to impact a life.
Point To Ponder:
What opportunities do you have each day to impact a life?
Find one way, everyday, to make a difference in a life.