To Bless and Be Blessed

I always thought that one of my main goals for 2010 would be to stop stressing out so easily and live more of a simpler life. But yet as this week progressed, I found myself reconsidering as to what my number one goal really was.

I’ve been reading a book called Writing to Change the World; it’s not neccessarily a manual for writing in general, but an in-depth look at writing that will effect other people in a positive way. At one point during the introduction, the author talks about visiting her dying Grandmother in the hospital. She proceeds to ask “Grandma, were you happy with your life?” The Grandmother replies that better question would be not if she was happy, but if she was able to do some amount of good while she was living her life.

Just recently I was having coffee with a friend at starbucks talking about high school and the trivial things that are starting to wear on the both of us. She recalled to me about a time when a freshman dropped his books all over the floor and no one really made an effort to stop and help him. Once she saw how much the boy was struggling she went over and helped him gather his things so that he could get to his next class

And when I got home that night and wrote down all of the little blessings I’d been experiencing that day, I thought to myself I have been blessed with so much, both in the last couple of weeks and throughout my life. But what have I personally contributed to the people around me?

Which leads me to say that my resolution for 2010 has changed a bit; well maybe not changed per say, but I’ve added something to it: I want to be more of a selfless person; I don’t want to just recieve from people anymore, I want to give. And not just give back to loved ones that have been there for me or get involved with volunteer work. I want to bless someone each and every day.

To me, blessing someone isn’t just about donating time or money to an event or organization. There are so many small blessings that can make a world of difference to someone. I know I can bless my parents by doing my chores without being asked. I know I can bless my siblings and friends by coming out and supporting them when they play sports. Other times it just might be the simple things, say loaning a pencil or saying hi to someone in the hallway. (Honestly, things like that just tend to put the biggest smile on my face. haha)

It seems like with the recession going on, alot of America has kicked into an “every person for themselves” type mode and do what they have to do to survive. I understand that, because my family has been in that position for three years. But does that mean we have to forgo everyone else’s needs as well? Like I said, it’s not (and should never be) just about giving money. If there are parents in the neighborhood who’ve been working their butts off trying to put food on the table, maybe one could offer to watch the kids while they have some time to themselves. Or perhaps if someone you know is running around like a chicken with their head cut off trying to clean the house, would it be all that bad if you yourself picked up mop and dustpan yourself alongside them?
The saddest part is seeing what selfishness can do to so many people, especially those my age. Over Christmas break I was in the parking lot and Target with my mom when I heard a woman practically yell “You know what? I really don’t care about other people!” (Suffice to say I don’t know what the situation was in it’s entirety but it sounded like she really meant it). There are incidents similar to the one my friend related to me that happen every single day, and at times there are even worse happenings that go on in all sorts of groups of people and schools.

Is it ever hard? Yes! It’s human nature for every single one of us to be selfish; we all have wants and desires, whether they be materialistic or wondering about what people truly think about us. I’ll admit that in the back of my mind, I have a tendancy to be like that. It’s a horrible habit that I’m working to break. It has become my prayer each morning that I might be able to bless someone that day, regardless of how big or small of a blessing it may be.

And that’s the truth; that wherever I go or whatever I do, that something good may come out of it. I hope that I can bless people through the writings that I share with them, or whoever comes to this blog. I hope that I can bless my friends by being a good friend myself and being there when they need me, even if they don’t always come to me. Above all, I hope I can bless others by just living day to day with strength, courage and faith.

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