Our world has become a place where far too much emphasis is placed on being self sufficient. We put too much time into striving to survive. Selfishness is the order of the day, and sad as it is to admit, we have become a society caught up in our own importance at the detriment to our communities and society at large.
A lot of hard work and time is given by members of our society to make charity a working part of our lives, collecting on behalf of hugely valuable organisations or community groups that have a significant impact throughout the world, but this kind of giving is made far too easy for us as individuals. Yes we dig into our pocket and give, but it is left to others to make the difference, and while we can draw satisfaction from feeling involved, we sadly lack the reward of experiencing the change our donation makes at the end of the line.
Don’t get me wrong, I do honestly believe that charitable giving has an important place in our modern world, however what I am trying to suggest is that we as a society should challenge ourselves more.
There is more to be done than simply digging into our pocket and producing small change, or setting up a direct debit or standing order for a monthly contribution to some foundation or charitable organisation.
Let me ask you to think back to when you did something special for a perfect stranger in your community? When was the last time that you made an effort to make someone you didn’t know feel good about themselves or make their day extra special?
I am certain that for the majority of us we can all attest to being guilty of failing this test. I know that far too often I am caught up in a world of personal complexities, the demanding world of surviving in difficult financial times and far too busy to stop and wonder how I could make someone’s day a great day. Does this make me selfish? No I don’t believe that just one action alone makes me fundamentally flawed by selfishness, however I do think that it points to the fact that I could do more.
More importantly I believe that it points to the fact that we could all do more. If you are reading this and thinking, well yes, if I am totally honest with myself, I know that I could also do more, then allow me to challenge you this Christmas to commit yourself to making it an extra special Christmas for one person that you know will benefit from just a little bit of love.
It is not a big thing to show someone else some appreciation this year. It’s a special time of the year anyway, and it’s called the season of giving for a reason, so let’s make an effort to share with someone different this year, and spread the feeling of goodwill beyond our comfort zone.
Communities are made stronger by the simple actions of people within them. We become better people by reaching out and helping people not as fortunate as ourselves. Let’s be honest, we all know of someone that would benefit from our help. Even if you don’t it is not massively difficult to find someone within our communities that would benefit from a little bit of extra love and consideration. I guess the most important consideration in this appeal is that personal feeling of satisfaction. Your personal sacrifice in time, expense and effort produces the most rewarding feeling when you see the look of amazement and happiness on the face or in the eyes of the individual you touch with your love. Nothing can replace that warm glow of unity that you feel in your soul.
So take a moment of reflection if you have read this, and promise yourself to touch another this year. Let us all learn through our commitment to put a smile on someone’s face this Christmas that communities grow into better places through our actions, and people become better people when we share and reach out to each other. Giving is so much more than just your small change, and when a whole society begin to make small contributions to our community, it is then that we see the Big Society take hold, snow ball and become a thriving, healthy, social network of people making the difference for each other.