Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Ask yourself, "What can I do for them?"

One of the most freeing things I learned as a Christian is that - other than God and Jesus being in the top spot of your life - you should think of others' needs.

This seems like a no-brainer, but I find it very easy to become self-involved or so worried about my own deal that I miss what is going on with others around me or what they need.

This way of thinking has made the holidays a pure joy for me. So many people lament the shopping that comes with gift-giving at Christmas and Valentines. I absolutely adore it. I find such joy in thinking of those I love and what might make them happy. If they give me something, it is a pleasant bonus. Regardless of that, I am given the privilege of being able to find things for them or do things for them.

I, personally, am so much happier in life when I think, "What do they need? What can I do for them?" My husband, son, family, friends, in-laws.

This doesn't mean I ignore what I need. I am human. There are things that are important to me, things I need and want in my life, and I communicate those. But I try not to make those my main focus. I care for myself, ask for the things I need, and then try to focus on others.

This is also not to say it isn't a struggle sometimes. I have to remind myself of it, daily sometimes. The day to day toil of life can knock you back into self-involvement pretty easily. And self-involved doesn't mean selfish, just wrapped up in ones own thoughts, problems, desires, concerns, opinions and living life as a response to that.

So every day I work at it, forcing myself to back up and see what those around me need. And sometimes, this attitude of "What can I do for you? What do you need?" is taken on by those around you, and let me tell you, there is no happier a place than when each person is try to do for the other above themselves, tripping over themselves out of love and kindness to try and make life easier for the other people. You get a whole family doing this and boy do you all feel blessed!

As I say, I have to work at it, but it is one of the most worthwhile things I have ever endeavored to do. The next thing to work on is doing this in the volunteer arena, helping those I don't know or don't know well.

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