Giving Back

I remember hearing or reading somewhere there is a saying, it goes something like, to those whom much is given, much is expected. We could look at this from many perspectives, for today, I am looking at the aspect of helping others.

I have always had a feeling and a desire to help others. When we have money, it is easy to make a donation. We can drop some coins in the kettle, have a monthly gift taken out of the check, attend a gala, or just write a check ourselves. What do we do when we don’t have funding for ourselves?

Working as a member of the military for most of my life and then putting kids through school, there were occasions when I understood the lack of personal funding. And yet, it never stopped me from helping others. Donating money, if you have it, is an easy way to help others. There are other ways which are sometimes a little bit more challenging.

Whenever I don’t have money to donate, I like to give time. Donating money is not cheap, yet you can always earn more money. Money becomes a renewable resource. If you donate your time, you are giving a nonrenewable resource which you cannot replenish. And yet there is a beautiful trade-off here.

When I donate time, I do give a nonrenewable resource which I know I will not be able to recoup. In exchange, though, I received terrific gifts in return. I am able to connect with people and talk with them. I learn new things that I consider important because the lessons come from those who actually live the knowledge they have to share. I may have a chance to make somebody’s day better. Having given this donation of time, no matter how grueling, I almost always walk away knowing that I feel better for the opportunity and the experience.

You don’t have to have something formal or participate through an organization, sometimes helping a neighbor rake the leaves or sit on the porch and talk with a neighbor who might be lonely is all it takes. If you play catch with the kids in the neighborhood and talk with them, you are positively molding the future.

Think about it. Because the real trick is, doing something good for someone else really does something good for you.

Thank you for being here today I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Got Help?

It is okay to need or offer help.

One day or another, on one question or another each of us needs assistance in finding the answers. Help sometimes comes in the form of knowing something the other person does not and sharing that knowledge. Other times, it is the ability to do something that another person cannot do for themselves.

Once again, we see significant weather phenomena, affecting our coastline. With wind and rain, and devastation to buildings and infrastructure, we see people in the middle of the storm bringing in their boats and going out to help people. We think those people and praise them for risking their own life and limb to save others.

Most of the time, help does not require anything quite so dramatic. Help is often two friends having a talk, sharing information, knowing that one would gladly give another a hand. Help is often someone just listening to another person and giving them a suggestion or two.

In many instances, the person being helped today may be giving the help tomorrow or the next day. After all, as the poets remind us, we are not islands, and we were never designed to live in solitude. Help and being helped is part of our inherited destiny. And, we should participate in that destiny when needed.

Taking Time to Help Others

One thing we have in common with others is a sense of empathy. It is something that every person has, whether they’re willing to admit it or not. And on occasion, we find an overwhelming desire to help.

We see people helping by donating monies to telethons. We see people giving even more valuable commodities such as time to work with, or for, those in need. I sincerely encourage everyone who feels the empathy and desires to help, to find a way that is best for them to do so.

I would not recommend selling everything, putting on sackcloth, and living in the street. That would not do much to help others and would make this person who does so destitute themselves. There are much better ways to help others.

To help others, could be to tend to their needs by donating usable items you no longer use instead of sending them to the landfill. Giving a few hours to talk and work with those less fortunate is even better. For someone who is stuck in a problem,  not finding his or her way out, just being able to talk to another human and work out a few concerns would be a wonderful gift.

As much as anyone would desire to, we cannot solve all the woes of others within the world. And yet we can do something. If you help two people, and they go out and help two people each, and the trend continues, think of how many people could be helped. And, with that many people being helped, think of how much better those in our world would be.

Just one person’s thoughts.

Thank you for reading. I hope to be here again tomorrow.