Helping or Serving…

Helping or Serving

As I ponder how swiftly the months of 2013 have unfolded, I am reminded of one of the goals that I set forth in January of this year. Along with the usual aspirations to eat better, work out more and be a better Dad, I also was led by my spirit to seek out and respond to opportunities to help others who crossed my life path. The number five was one that struck me as a doable amount; nothing overly ambitious, yet a number that would stretch me out of my comfort zone.

Here, in August, I now am taking inventory of what progress I have made thus far. There is the nurse of Chinese heritage, unable to get employment, due to her lack of one-year American job experience…I directed her to a colleague in the Chinatown area of Oakland who is assisting her to find something that is suitable for her skill set.

There is a longtime friend and business associate who has taken ill this year, and I volunteered to do yard work…at my age and on two of the hottest days of the year, nonetheless. She is grateful, and I am looking for some younger person to pay the next time.

Though I am sure there are at least two more examples of this type of help, it occurred to me this week that there might well be a distinct difference between helping someone and truly serving others.

In my Legal Shield business, for example, there are a few of my colleagues who are quite new at being self-employed. Their vast work experience has consisted of the all-too-familiar trading time for dollars scenario. And now, here they are looking at how to transfer their particular skills into building a business that requires a great deal more than just showing up and going through the motions.

In a moment of illumination, I saw how my desire to help this year may well be an opportunity to serve…not just a one-time individual expression of humanity, but one whereby I will remain fully engaged in the growth and success of a person seeking financial freedom, better health, overcoming long-held fears, etc. It has caused me to be humbled in a new and profound way.

And now, in this the 8th month of 2013, I feel a sense of servitude that I have never felt before. I now understand that a mentor/mensch is one who will lead by the daily examples of choices made…from the most mundane to the highest called ones.

And so, I ask that you, in your Autumnal reflections, consider whom you are serving. Take inventory of those who model your speech, mannerisms, language…for yes, they are certainly watching.

I liken the above examples to the level of assistance one receives at the local
Wal-Mart and the upscale Nordstrom stores. One is known for true unapologetic service while the other is famous for low prices and a blue vested greeter who may or may not be of much help. One will stay with you and insure that your shopping experience is remarkable, while the other will be content with pointing you toward that aisle and hoping that you don’t come back to ask another question.

In my legacy-building days, I seek to serve in a way that will make both my ancestors and heirs proud. To offer a helping hand is a good thing, extending a heart to serve is a commitment that requires a soul connection that may last a lifetime.

That will be my payment to the Almighty for the gift of life He endows upon me.