I saw this on the KSAX TV website. An unemployed contractor donated a custom trailer he owned to a nonprofit agency that provides service dogs for people who are deaf or disabled.
A week ago (on Thanksgiving) someone had stolen the trailer owned by the nonprofit. Without it they could not deliver the supplies to their clients.
The contractor, Paul Tate, was moved by this story and gave them a custom-built trailer he owned, so they could continue their work.
Beside being proud of this guy (especially since he’s from Burnsville, my hometown) I love this example of people serving others. Here is a guy who could be hunkering down hoarding everything he has because he’s out of work. Instead he gives away something very valuable to an agency he had no connection with. And he did it with no expectation of any type of return.
I call that service. It’s putting others first. It’s focusing on helping others meet their needs and goals.
In my conversations with people this fall, I’ve heard a surprising number of stories like this. People who have their own struggles and challenges (like unemployment) yet who are doing more for others than ever before. Volunteering, making donations, helping out a neighbor.
What’s going on here?
Am I seeing signs of a silver lining in this dark cloud of economic change we’re experiencing? As we face hardship and uncertainty are we more willing to change our priorities? Could it be that “dying with the most toys” or having the highest “cylinder count” isn’t so important anymore?
As our economy and world change, perhaps we are allowing ourselves to look beyond our own needs and pay attention to others a little more. Maybe an outcome of this turbulent and transformational time is that we will focus more on how to serve each other because we know it’s the right thing to do and, even better, it feels good.
Wouldn’t that be nice! (I’ll keep my fingers crossed.)