Sunday, September 30, 2012

Have I done any good today?


I love service. I love the whole idea of serving others. Now, with that said I have a confession to make. I have always had a hard time accepting service from others. For twelve years I have had people going out of their way to serve our family and I went out of my way to make it more difficult for them without even realizing it. Once I acknowledged what a stinker I was being with my constant “We’re fine… no we don’t need any help…. I’ve got it covered”… my attitude quickly changed.

  At the beginning of the year one of my New Year resolutions was to become more humble and gracious in accepting help and service from others. Little did I know how God was going to bring this goal of mine to pass.  I seriously need to think more about all the possible out comes before praying for help for my weaknesses. ;-)

It is no secret that this year was been HARD. I learned early on that there was no way that I could be what I needed to be to Bubba without excepting help from those around me. It was hard. I didn’t like it at first. I can be stubborn but once I stared saying yes it quickly became easier.

 yes I would love you to pick Regan up from school,

yes I would love you to bring dinner over,

yes…..

In all honesty God answers prayers best by sending someone else to help us out. It would be easy for him to take that challenge away but then the one serving and the one receiving the service would miss out on important blessings and life lessons.

I had one sweet woman, a retired kindergarten teacher, ask if she could take Regan to school for me so that I wouldn’t have to wake my sick sleeping boy each morning. What a HUGE blessing this simple task was to me. After finishing her early morning years of teaching she insisted on continuing those early morning wake up calls to take my daughter to school. Each morning she would walk up to our front door to retrieve Regan. I told her that she could just honk but each morning there she was, at our front door. I finally realized that she was using this time to check on me and Bubba and see how we were doing. It would have been so much easier to drive up and honk but she felt the need to go a step further. One morning while she was picking Regan up from school she asked me about Hub’s surgery that day. His parents were out of town so we asked his uncle to pick him up after his surgery was over. She then went onto ask me how Hubs was doing. I told her that he was good but nervous and wished that I could be there when he woke up from his surgery. Hours later she was back at my front door taking Bubba from my arms and insisting that I go to my sweet Husband. “I have it covered.” She said. When I returned home with my sickly husband I walked into find three beautiful women in my home carrying for my son, cleaning my bathroom, and kitchen. I did not ask them to do any of this… they just did. They saw a need and they came to our rescue.

“If you come upon a person who is drowning, would you ask if they need help—or would it be better to just jump in and save them from the deepening waters?” Elder Ronald Rasband

We were blessed to have people bring meals into our home. I was constantly humbled by the kindness of others but there is one experience that sticks out in my mind. There was a knock at my door and I opened it to find a sweet, sweet woman from church holding a ton of food in her hands. When I saw her I wanted to tell her no, you keep it knowing that her family needed it much more than mine. I fought back the tears, put on a smile and graciously accepted her amazing gift of service, not wanting to hurt her feelings. I closed the door behind me and slowly slid down the door to the ground as I wept. I know this family well. I know their great financial needs and here she was feeding my family before feeding her own. I have never been more humbled in my life than by this sweet woman’s willingness to serve those around her.

 

After Bubba passed away a very sweet friend along with the wonderful woman from our church put together a luncheon for our family and closest friends. I was overwhelmed and told my friend that I trusted her to do whatever she wanted. She went out of her way to make it perfectly Bubba.  There were colorful balloons and mickey mouse as the centerpieces, busses holding the silverware, pictures of Bubba on the tables, and plenty of food to feed everyone that attended. One of my family members was complementing me on the luncheon and how perfect it was and I quickly stopped them to let them know that I had no part in it at all. They were amazed at how someone could give so much without anything in return. What an amazing act of service to go above and beyond to make sure that it was PERFECT.

 

 At the luncheon most of the sweet girls from my Sunday school class were there serving food. I was so touched by their kind actions. I went to one of them and told her how grateful I was for her service and being there for our family. She very sweetly said “Well, you are always there for me… so of course I will be here for you.”

 

I have seen over and over again this year the blessings of being an instrument in God’s hands as we serve others. I have seen the benefit as I have served and also as we have been served. What a loving Heavenly Father to make sure that we are never left comfortless.

John 14:18 “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.”

Last night while I watched Relief Society Conference I couldn’t help but feel every message was intended just for me.  The last message about serving others really got me thinking about this past year and all of the many people that have blessed my life, taught me, strengthened me, and been instruments in God’s hands as an answer to my heart felt prayers. Thank you!

“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.” Muhammad Ali
I will finish this post today with the words from on of my favorite songs....

Have I done any good in the world today?
Have I helped anyone in need?
Have I cheered up the sad and made someone feel glad?
If not, I have failed indeed.
Has anyone’s burden been lighter today
Because I was willing to share?
Have the sick and the weary been helped on their way?
When they needed my help was I there?

[Chorus]
Then wake up and do something more
Than dream of your mansion above.
Doing good is a pleasure, a joy beyond measure,
A blessing of duty and love.

 There are chances for work all around just now,
Opportunities right in our way.
Do not let them pass by, saying, “Sometime I’ll try,”
But go and do something today.
’Tis noble of man to work and to give;
Love’s labor has merit alone.
Only he who does something helps others to live.
To God each good work will be known.
So, I will ask you the same question that I ask myself every day.....
Have I done any good today??

2 comments:

Alissa Circle said...

This post brought tears to my eyes! It's so hard to let go and let others help us bc there is that fear that letting go means admitting to failure. That's not what it means at all. Letting go means allowing God to bless us in ways we never imagined.

Susan said...

I can't tell you how often I've had to give a gentle lecture to someone about allowing others to help her/him. The greatest joy we humans get in life is in giving to others, whether it's love, emotional support, physical help, or material goods. When you don't allow someone to help you, you deprive them of that joy of giving, of feeling useful to you in a special way. You've stated it well—it's hard to get to the point where we accept help because we all like to feel self-sufficient and we hate to feel beholden to someone else, but once you understand that by accepting help, you do the givers the huge favor of allowing them that joyful feeling about themselves--because they could do something useful for you--you realize that you've learned to be the receiver and not just the giver. It's very important to know that you need to be both. It is good to graciously accept help, just as you would graciously give it. Your friends and family deserve to feel the joy of giving just as you would if you knew someone needed help and you had the power to give it. Sometimes it takes many years for us to learn this important lesson. Sometimes pride steals away the opportunity for the givers to feel that special joy of helping someone they care about because the person in need refuses the help. If we could only realize what a gift it is to the giver when we allow them to help......
I learned that only after that gentle lecture had been delivered to me. I see things in a different light now.