Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Our Brand (Part 6) – Serve

 

ServeWhen you think of the word “Serve”, what do you think of?  Do you think of being a servant in the Master/Slave idea or do you think of it more as an answering of needs?  Does the idea make you cringe or make you smile?  Keith and I choose to look at it as a way of answering the needs of people. 

Most Americans are familiar with the quote, "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country." When President Kennedy spoke those words at his inaugural address, it was a call to be more, to do more. He asked the American people to think about the gifts they have been given, and the price that was paid for them. More and more often in the news and media, I see that people doing things for others has been replaced with people doing things for themselves. The idea of giving back has been replaced with a sense of entitlement -- people want what is "owed" to them. 

If your only reason for serving others is to get something back, you’ll only get that something back. That’s it. It’s like a transaction. 1 for 1. An apple for an orange. I do this, you give me that. People are always complaining that there are no opportunities out there when they already have within them the power to create them naturally by serving others. They refuse to serve and because they refuse to serve, those opportunities don’t come about at all.  But when you serve others because you genuinely want to, something big happens. A relationship is formed.

One of the most valuable ways to serve others is to show them that we care. Giving our time and encouragement to someone will often be more valuable than even the most generous gift. There are many people who feel lonely and want to chat with others. Even those who have many friends, and a loving family, enjoy speaking to new people.  When others need our help most, we should make a special effort to show them that we care. By providing love and support we can make a real difference in the lives of others.

There’s power in serving others and the power I’m talking about here is not the type that usually comes to mind when you see the word power. The power I’m speaking of is more like power in terms of opportunity, namely that serving others will result in powerful opportunities coming into your life that you never would’ve thought possible.

They’ve essentially made a habit of helping people with whatever they need AND they follow through on it. It becomes automatic. They don’t think – “What am I going to get out of this?” They just do.

As a result, the person that’s been helped senses this genuine desire to serve with no hidden agenda whatsoever and is compelled to help that person back. It’s natural. In fact, we tend to repay even more than what’s been given to us. Now since each person is so unique, filled with so much different knowledge, skills, abilities, contacts, etc., all of that can result in a myriad of opportunities that be given to you, without you even asking.

Serving others in it of itself is a powerful opportunity to help and when you start to serve others, you’ll realize the simple fact that we all need help and because you realize that, you’ll start to get in the habit of serving others even more. Imagine the avalanche of opportunities that fall into your lap then.

 

One of the things I keep learning is that the secret of being happy is doing things for other people.  - Dick Gregory