Changing the World

We’ve all had thoughts or dreams of changing the world.  Perhaps we see ourselves giving this life-changing speech.  Perhaps we imagine ourselves negotiating peace treaties between hostile nations or writing books where we explain life lessons in ways people never thought.  It can feel like people are waiting to hear the right thing and if we could just figure out what, we’d be the one to make that difference.

The truth is that we can dream of making big changes all we want, but it all starts in our day-to-day life.  If I want to make this world we live in a better place, I need to start with that small fraction of the world that’s part of my day-to-day life.

It doesn’t have to be complicated: friendly smile to people I meet throughout the day, quality time with my spouse and children, uttering words of consolation or encouragement to someone in need, giving a meal to homeless person, etc.  The possibilities are endless.

In the grand scheme of things, it can seem insignificant.  However, if everyone tried to brighten the day of those they meet in their day-to-day life, this world could almost become a true paradise.  If we start living this Gospel charity in our own lives, our example can inspire others to do the same.  A simple act of kindness can go a long way.

Imagine how many mental health issues would disappear if we learned to treat others with their God-given dignity.

Be a light to your world today!

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/15216811@N06/5004381056″>Trent as seen from Sardagna – IMG_7884</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

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Helping the Needy

All humanitarian deeds draw inspiration from the Gospel verses on the Final Judgment: Mt 25: 37-40 “Whereupon the just will answer, Lord, when was it that we saw thee hungry, and fed thee, or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When was it that we saw thee a stranger, and brought thee home, or naked, and clothed thee?  When was it that we saw thee sick or in prison and came to thee?  And the King will answer them, Believe me, when you did it to one of the least of my brethren here, you did it to me.”

Those verses are inspirational and wonderful to think about.  We can all talk the Christian / good-deeds talk, but putting these words into practice is a different story.  While I was out for a walk on my lunch break today, I was approached by a homeless lady who wanted money to buy her own food and drink.  To make a long story short, I agreed to buy her some food to eat to make sure that she was really getting food and not supporting some addiction or other unhealthy habit.

Afterwards, I was bothered by it.  Why is it that we give so reluctantly to those in need?  Sure, we all hear stories about people asking for money and then using it for drugs… but you just never know when there can be a legitimate need for life essentials.  The needy can sometimes use guilt-tripping strategies to convince you to help them, but then again wouldn’t we be inclined to do so as well if we were in a desperate situation like that as well?

In the end, this did push me out of my comfort zone and I’m glad it did.  It’s also amazing that I have such an incredible and supporting wife who reassured me that I did the right thing.

What are your experiences with helping the needy?  What are your challenges?  Please feel free to share.

Be a light to your world today!

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/10015349@N00/2744567495″>a lesson in generosity</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;