What can I give?
This morning as I was doing my daily study of the scriptures and the word of God, I was reminded again of how important it is for one to think of others, rather than just himself. The two questions that were put into my thoughts were
- What can I get/do for myself?
- What can I give/do for others?
Which of these questions occupies your mind the most? I believe that most of us are worried about ourselves. We are worried that we will have enough to cover our needs. But it goes beyond our needs many times and we wonder what we can do to make our lives more comfortable when perhaps the needs of other people are left unmet.
This semester in school, I have tried to think more of what I can do for other people, particularly in relation to Family Home Evening (FHE). Family Home Evening is an evening out of the week where we (either families or groups of young single adults) get together and have a gospel lesson, an activity, and usually a treat. It is a great time for us to get to know each other better and spend time with each other.
Anyway, many times I was in charge of the activity. The first day that I was in charge of the activity, my mind was filled with the quote about not thinking of what you can do for yourself but of what you can do for others. So, I made it my goal this last semester to have a service activity of sorts whenever I was in charge of the activity.
It went really well, and my FHE group always felt good afterwards. That is the interesting thing about service. You cannot really give without feeling good inside.
People need you
There are people out there who need your love and your help. Please do not pass up opportunities to serve. Thomas S. Monson once said:
“The needs of others are ever present, and each of us can do something to help someone…Unless we lose ourselves in service to others, there is little purpose to our own lives.”
I have found that it is when I serve others that I feel the best about myself. I actually feel like I am doing something good and worthwhile. In fact, sometimes it almost makes me giddy inside. This is especially true as I do anonymous acts of service.
It doesn’t have to be big
Our service to others does not have to be a big or huge effort or act of service. Little, tiny acts of service do just as much good, and sometimes more good than huge acts of service do. Sometimes a simple smile is what someone needs to brighten their day and help them to keep going. Spencer W. Kimball said this about service:
“It is vital that we serve each other in the kingdom…So often, our acts of service consist of simple encouragement or of giving…help with mundane tasks, but what glorious consequences can flow…from small but deliberate deeds!”
By small and simple things great things happen. A little note or a hug is often all someone needs to have a brighter day.
Serving others strengthens relationships. When we serve with a loving heart, we come to love those we serve. In the Sermon on the Mount the Savior says in Matthew 5:44:
“Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”
The Savior is telling us that through doing good to others we are living His higher law. Through serving others, even and especially those we do not believe like us, brings us to love them. Joseph B. Wirthlin says this about service strengthening relationships:
“Kindness is the essence of greatness…(It) is a passport that opens doors and fashions friends. It softens hearts and molds relationships that can last lifetimes.”
Serving others helps to soften their hearts and bring them closer to their Savior. Sometimes people do not accept service or do not like to let other people serve them. While we must respect people’s wishes, I have found that sometimes I just need to act and do something. Rather than ask if someone needs help with something, sometimes I just need to get up and start helping them. It has been my experience that they are usually extremely grateful for the help and the act of love.
You can make a difference in the world and in somebody’s life by serving, and your life will be richly blessed by doing so.