Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Call to Serve Others

Today’s post is a brief one. It’s a note about teaching our kids to live lives dedicated to service to their fellow men. Earlier this week, I wrote a post entitled Helping Your Kids to Discover and Develop Their Talents. As they develop their talents, they should also develop the mindset that their gifts are not given to them only for their use; but rather, they ought to be used to serve others.

They may not know just what they will become in life but whatever it is that they do become, they should think of how others stand to benefit. The more they serve others, the greater meaning their lives will have. As they serve, perhaps they will become rich. Perhaps they won’t. The key to it all is that they learn to serve.
My poem How Can I Serve Humanity?  was written with this thought in mind. It is written from the perspective of a child who looks at the great names throughout history and wonders how (s)he can be of service. Enjoy reading it:

By Rodrick Walters

Beethoven could write a great symphony.
Sinatra could sing a great melody.
Shakespeare could write a great tragedy,
but nothing great was ever found in me.

In my childhood I read of the great JFK—
how he led our fair nation and showed us the way.
And then I heard of the great MLK
whose dream is still living, even today.

The legend of Florence Nightingale
was not a made-up fairy tale.
Mother Theresa’s compassion prevailed;
and who could forget the Princess of Wales?

Well, how can I serve humanity?
What shall be my legacy?
What greatness could possibly be hiding in me,
that’ll ring on through the hallways of eternity?

Tho’ my name might not be written in lights
and I might not be onstage with all the spotlights,
in my own humble way I’ll serve life with delight,
as I give all I have by day and by night.

The fame and the fortune don’t matter to me—
just the service I offer to humanity.
Like great men and great women throughout history,
may my work live for ages, long after me.

The key to living a meaningful, successful life is being determined to live a life of service. The fame and the fortune are really irrelevant in the grand scheme of things; it’s really about how effective you are as you serve others.

Let’s teach our kids these principles. You may have heard it said, “It is better to give than to receive.” That’s not simply about giving our financial resources; it’s about giving of our time and talents toward the benefit of others.

Think on these thoughts and help your kids to develop the mindset of service.

Have a great day.

The Upbeat Dad

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