Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’ – the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr
Today we in the United States celebrate Martin Luther King Day. A few days ago, I noticed articles about it being a Day of Service, not a day “off” but a day “on.” And every year, I wonder how many people have already planned the day, and wind up just feeling guilty and avoiding the whole thing. I wonder how many aren’t “off” to do “service.” So here is a project for those of us who are not cleaning beaches or sorting coats or working at food kitchens:
If you are in school, and working one or more jobs to stay in school, and there is no free time….
If you are the parent of young children, or a sick child and there is no free time…
If it never occurred to you that today is anything but a holiday, and you needed a holiday, darn it…
If you are working two or more jobs just to keep body and soul together and there is no free time…
If you are a celebrity, and a million people are making demands on you…
If you are disabled by physical or mental illness, and your options are limited…
If you are overwhelmed by life, for any reason at all….
There are still ways we can do for others.
I can say “thank you” to the person who does me a service.
I can drive carefully, with regard for the lives and safety of others.
I can speak kindly to the person who is in my way.
I can give others the benefit of the doubt.
I can speak up for someone else who is being mistreated in a way that may seem small to me but may be big for them.
I can acknowledge the humanity of others, by my manner and my speech.
If in a world of billions, even a thousand of us do one or more of these things, the world will shift. The balance will be altered. Try and see.