Mary is a Sophomore at Georgetown University studying Nursing and Health Studies. She enjoys running, being around any body of water, and spending time with her one-eyed dog Myrna (preferably all in the same day.)
“To love another person is to see the face of God” –Victor Hugo
My high school stressed the achievement of community service hours in only a small number of nonprofits around the community, as if to say that giving back to one’s community was only valued in certain locations with certain signatures.
Coming to DC, however, completely changed my views on the matter.
When studying began to overwhelm any of my spare time and volunteering every Saturday became a thing of the past, I looked for fulfillment elsewhere.
Soon, I realized two things. First, giving back didn’t have to occur during an allotted time in an allotted place. Second, my giving back benefitted me as much as it benefitted those who I helped.
Christ came to Earth and served people, and, as we all call ourselves “Christians,” we should be doing the same. There is no book on how to serve, where to serve, or when to serve- rather, just go out and do.
Guiding someone as they parallel park or helping somebody carry their bike up a flight of stairs can not only make their day, but yours as well. Even if only for a few minutes at a time, stopping our lives to help others can remind us once again of our purpose here on earth: to spread the love of God.
I don’t know if you are familiar with the “Pay it Forward” videos (I think they’re actually ads for an insurance company?); they’re very simple yet extremely powerful.
One person does a small good deed for another, and the other person gives back elsewhere. Giving back is contagious, and if you start the chain, the whole city benefits.
Not only are so many individuals helped, but these people also benefit by helping others.
Jesus renewed the chain of kindness that started with the creation of man, and it’s continued two thousand years later. However, it’s up to us to preserve his legacy.
In ‘God’s Promises for You’, Max Lucado talks about his time visiting a cathedral marking the supposed birthplace of Jesus. He says that behind the altar is a small cavern with a star embedded on the floor that recognizes the birth of Jesus. However, to enter the cavern, one must stoop, for the door is low.
“You can see the world standing tall, but to witness the savior, you have to get on your knees.” Serve others, give back, and you will see the light of God.