I cannot speak for everyone else, but I am not particularly pleased when one of those indicator lights starts to light up the dashboard of my car. Normally, these lights communicate there is something wrong with the vehicle, which means I am going to be reaching into my wallet soon. I don’t find the lights have ever brought me a feeling of satisfaction, peace, or harmony in my life. Usually, I start to feel stressed.
Then, I wonder whether the light is mistakenly on. I ignore it for some time, hoping it will just go off. When it occasionally does, I feel satisfaction somehow in not having to do anything. More often, it continues to flash at me, sending out waves of anxiety about what is wrong with my car. While the lights are helpful to maintain my car and keep me moving, I do not like the feeling I get when they start to blink. However, there is one light on the dashboard which sends a very helpful life message: “Service Required.”
If I could install an indicator light on the dashboard of my life, I would choose the “Service Required” light. This message is powerful and key to living the most productive and happy life. Service is truly essential.
When we reach out in loving kindness to others, not only does the world become better, but we grow too! Service adds substance to each of our daily interactions.
Hearts are lifted, souls are strengthened, and hope is instilled. When we, in generous service, reach out to someone around us, we feel a sense of confidence, assurance, and connection. Nothing is more powerful than charitable service to another in need.
Some of my greatest memories have been wrapped up in the opportunity to serve someone else. As I look back on the roads of life I have traveled, I smile at the thought of opportunities to help one in need. Let’s face it! The road of life is sometimes hard to travel. Would we all not be better, if we took more time to stop and help someone stranded on the side?
I will never forget heading to a church meeting dressed in my finest clothes and having this opportunity. A woman was stuck on the side of the road with an obviously very flat tire. She resisted my help, but in my suit and tie, I changed the tire for her. She was grateful and teary-eyed as she looked at my greasy hands and my soiled suit. I wished her well and never saw her again. Yet, I have not stopped thinking about that experience. I was too late for the worship service but went anyway. I felt incredible as I walked into the building with my soiled hands and clothes. I remember feeling just as grand washing my hands as I had felt in any religious service I had previously attended. Service had made the difference. It always makes a difference!
We need each other. There are too many people in this world who tear down. We need more who lift up. There are enough people who find fault. We need more people who build and strengthen.
Every day, you can find an abundance of people who act in selfish ways. We need more people who give selfless service. For within service is the very substance of life. Greater joy, greater love, greater harmony, greater satisfaction, and greater peace all can be found by the service we do for others.
Start today! Install a “Service Required” light on your dashboard. Attend to it right away. Start with your family and those right around you. Then, extend the marvelous influence of selfless service to those in your neighborhood and community. Seek to make a difference. For in a full and rich life, service truly is required.