PORCH SWING POINT OF VIEW Volunteerism: The Art of Doing


“When all is said and done, more is said than done,” so the saying goes. I don’t know about you, but I find a lot of truth in that. We talk, we plan, we organize. We form committees to form groups to gather together functions that require even more committees. We work tirelessly in order to prepare to do…what? By now we’ve forgotten, and my point is made: not much doing actually gets done.

But, of course, there are exceptions to that rule, one of which creates an excellent topic for today: volunteerism. You see, when a committed group of individuals band together for a certain cause, work gets done. Whether it be simply folks pulling together to tend to an ill neighbor’s lawn or an actual organized charity, if the intent is strong and the participants are willing, the work that results is positive indeed.

As many of you may know, your columnist is a proud member of the Tennerton Lions Club. But you see, it takes more than being a member. I, as well as my fellow Lions, must be active participants in the projects we undertake or else they wouldn’t get done. Mere talk gets us nowhere.

So then if we first accept that we certainly talk more than do, then work to remedy that through active volunteerism, what is the final outcome? The result is in fact a joyful spirit from having helped impact a positive change in our small corner of the world.

A dear friend of mine (and fellow Lion) and I were discussing recently just how easy it can be to feel sorry for ourselves, to complain about aches and pains, and to say, “Let someone else do it.” But when we push ourselves to do the work that needs done, how easily the aches and pains subside and how quickly our spirits are renewed.

There is more to life than a nine-to-five job followed by dinner and television. There is more to life than discussing the weather and arguing about politics. And yes, there is even more to life than just passing the hours on your porch swing. Our lives simply must contain a certain component of giving back if we’re ever to feel truly content with them.

I hope you’ll find a way to volunteer and give back. Find an organization committed to a cause you hold dear. If you’re not a “joiner” then begin to affect the changes you wish to see with your own effort. For it is when we give of ourselves that we are truly fulfilled.

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