Early this year, I started my happiness project and I included giving back goals in my journal. I planned on volunteering for church and/or select a charity close to my heart. Years ago, I appreciate the volunteering services while I was still teaching back then. The outreach programs we’ve done in partnership with students enabled me to realize the value of giving back to others. I also remembered few times visiting a place for abandoned elders and it tugged my heartstrings seeing these elders who are of the same age with my grandparents. I thought and hoped during those times that volunteering even for a few hours will make a difference or touched other lives. I stopped for a while when I got married and had my son. I must admit due to busy nature of my work and dividing time for my family the thought of volunteering was the least priority in my list.
I think God has a better plan because early this year, one of our D-Group members in our couples’ ministry invited me if I can provide volunteer service for writing articles for our weekly Chronicles newsletter. The Chronicle newsletter is distributed every Sunday to all church goers and it contains the preaching from our Pastor and all information you need to know about the church and its ministries. Since I love to write and read, I said yes. At first I was hesitant because my only legit writing experience is being a contributor on our school organ in high school and college and few months’ stint as adviser for school organ while I was teaching. I did not include my previous blogging experience because I was not able to keep up on doing my travel blogs. My task is to provide an article once a month and then after my regular monthly assignment it became twice a month volunteer work. In addition, I like doing volunteer work that I could squeeze in between family and work and still serve the Lord. I appreciate doing small things in which I can lend a hand.
Few Sundays ago, it also struck me while hearing the preaching on volunteering and serving God. It is says “Do not judge people. We are all uniquely designed by serving God. Those serving God had no time criticizing others. Be a servant and God will guide you”. Being a volunteer does not ask for anything in return, I just love the thought of doing something I love and providing service to church and God. Not only it de-stresses me but also rekindle my love for writing. For me I appreciate that for a start, a small act of service and volunteering keeps me grounded and enjoy the things I love ever since I was young. Sometimes the happiness comes in small acts of kindness and volunteering. We love to receive great blessings and things from God, our family and friends, but sometimes it is also good to give back and serve others. Giving back does not mean topping your friend’s gift by buying more expensive item or going all out and/or exclusively serving God, but rather doing small stuff to ease out burdens or cheer others.
There are so many ways to volunteer and serve others, it may be a:
- Volunteer for emergency responses
- Volunteer as counselor
- Lend a hand on tasks of your expertise
- Adopt a pet or rescue a pet
- Be a baby sitter for a day
- Help a neighbor
- Volunteer teacher or mentor for a day
- Held a party for less fortunate kids or elders
- Volunteer to organize stuff around the house
- Give something for charity
- Give away clothes or stuff you no longer use for less fortunate kids
- Give away second hand text books
- Volunteer for a clean-up drive or build houses at Habitat
The list can go on and there are still lots of activities you can think of for a volunteer service. Always remember that when volunteering that it does not ask anything in return but to give back wholeheartedly. Providing service from the heart without any expectations and doubt goes a long long way. There are no small or big tasks for volunteering. Great opportunities are often disguised in small tasks and you will be surprised with the joy it bring after the task is done. In addition, I am looking forward that my son would be able to do his own choosing of volunteer service in the future that would help him grow and realize the importance of giving back with others and God.
Happiness = small great deed with Lord and others!
Oh and just a few snapshot of the articles I’ve done for our Chronicles. Words are from the manuscripts of our Pastors in church. 🙂