57 years ago an historic event occurred in another country, propelling the United States forward in the “Race for Space”. Do you know your history?
It also happens to be the day I was born. My life has been influenced by science, industry, competition and forward thinking. Strive to be the best. Don’t settle for anything less. At the same time the words of President John F. Kennedy in his inaugural speech became the framework of service that has shaped me.
ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.
I was only 4 when that speech was given, but in the years to come those 17 words were repeated in the media and in classrooms through formative years. I thought about what could I do for my country? How could I help others? Through involvements in student council, Scouts, church and the YMCA, I learned how to fundraise, serve those who were “less fortunate” in our community and how to be in leadership.
When I went away to college I joined a sorority, Alpha Gamma Delta. I learned what it means to live with purpose in those years as I was mentored by the Alumnae leadership while an undergraduate officer. You might think “party girl” and although there was some of that there is much more to being involved in a fraternal organization. Fundraising, leadership and altruism were high values that became even more deeply a part of me through my four years of college. At the heart of our purpose are these words:
“To welcome the opportunity of contributing to the world’s work in the community where I am placed because of the joy of service thereby bestowed and the talent of leadership multiplied.”
A theme song of serving was starting to be played out in my life…
When God saw fit to open the eyes of my heart to understand His Word and purpose for my life, it was as if all the notes for the music dropped onto the page and a lovely melody came out. I learned that servant leadership was a value to God because His Son modeled that life for us. One of my favorite passages of Scripture that captures our actions as Christ followers is found in Philippians 2.
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
We’re called forth from navel gazing (focusing on ourselves) to looking to the needs of others. Just think! If all of us looked out for each other, there would be a greater sense of community, less isolation and loneliness, more physical needs would be met and there would be a greater sense of purpose for all.
Jesus told us It is more blessed to give than to receive.
We can all take an audit of how our time is spent; time is the one resource we are gifted that cannot be renewed. How we spend time will be what we give an account of when we stand before God.
There are a million little ways to begin! Pray. Go through your cupboards and closets and gather things to give away. Volunteer for organizations that help others in some capacity. Give financially.
Share some of your ideas that have worked for you! It would be great to be able to learn new ways of giving/serving to encourage each other!