So, a few weeks ago I gave the children’s sermon at our church and talked about Fred Rogers. As I told the kids, when I was younger Mr. Rogers taught me we all are neighbors and that we should be kind to one another even when we disagree. He also taught me when I was upset, scared or confused to look for the helpers – adults around us helping to make things better. Since I gave that sermon I haven’t been able to shake one question circling in my brain. “Now that I’m an adult, am I one of those helpers?”
Don’t get me wrong, I feel I do help at times – but I also wonder how much more I could help if I made a concerted effort. In spending time analyzing my motivations, I’ve realized my days usually center around two questions: “What do I need to accomplish today?” and “How much time do I have to make these things happen?” The problem with these questions is that they are centered on getting my own needs met. And when I’m focusing on my own issues, I end up inadvertently missing out on opportunities to support others and make things better.
So, after a week of feeling beyond blessed and thankful, I’m going to try to change my focus. My new question needs to be “How can I help?”. Lord knows there are a whole lot of upset, scared and confused individuals in this world. Perhaps if we all shifted our focus away from getting our own needs met, towards helping others, the world would be a much better place. Of course, thanks goes to Fred Rogers for this simple, yet powerful life lesson.