Monday, June 12, 2017

A life of service

I was at a dinner for the alumni association for my alma mater and a speaker was talking about something - I can't remember what - it was very compelling while I was listening to it, the man was very entertaining and I enjoyed the speech but I don't remember what he talked about - but there was one line that he said that stuck to me and I've been thinking about since and the line he said was "a life of service".

What does that mean? What does it mean to you? What it means to me is the act of volunteerism and how important it is to a healthy society - I don't think we could exist without it.

How much of your life is dedicated to something that is done without pay? That you do simply because you feel called to it, because no one else is willing to do it, because you want to make yourself look good, because you are bored in your life - really there are a million reasons why someone volunteers their time.

There are some of us who's lives are completely dedicated to a cause - a lot of animal people who live and breathe animal rescue, who do it 24 hours a day 7 days a week - that is the world I know and have lived for the past 15 years.

Some people dedicate their lives to a religious calling - that's the fabulous thing about this world - there are billions of people on it and we all have our different interests - I am obsessed with animals and there are other people out there obsessed with helping suffering children - we don't all have to save everything - I'm sure animals are happy I'm interested in them.

Living a life of service is a noble cause - and I don't think that people who live their lives that way are given the credit they deserve - there are a lot of people here in Nova Scotia who live this life that I know - they don't get days off - emails have to be answered 365 days a year, the problems of the animals under their care never go away, facebook posts have to be written, events have to be organized and attended, funds have to raised, causes have to be promoted, animals have to be taken care of - the things to do are endless.

I'm sure a lot of people who are doing this don't even realize they are living a life of service - they think they are just living their life - but really - what they are doing and how they are living their lives is very noble - they are changing the world.

Volunteerism as an altruistic activity is one of the most satisfying things in life and is an awesome way to live - it's difficult at times, exhausting - but at the end of the day there's no better way to live than to know you are making a difference - no matter how small that difference has been.

To live a life of service to others - no matter what species that "others" is - means that your time on this earth has made an imprint on something other than your couch - go out and volunteer for something that is meaningful to you - whether it's little kids at your child's school or animals at the SPCA or a private rescue and you won't be disappointed - I can guarantee it :) - and if you see someone volunteering - thank them for their service.