On Saturday Evelina and I had the privilege of helping an organization called Hoskins Park Ministries repair the outside of a house they are renovating for homeless men. I responded to a friend’s post on Facebook to help. The post had a lot of responses, but no one saying yes. So I instantly decided it would be a great way to spend a Saturday morning.
Although I am limited somewhat physically, I was given the task of helping to caulk some cracks on the exterior to prep for paint. The house was built in 1910 and has seen better days. Over the years the wood siding has warped and weathered and needed to be sealed. The sealant will minimize the air flowing through those cracks and was the simplest fix considering the limited budget.
While talking to the volunteer director my mind was inspired with the words of a commercial I had heard the day prior:
Don’t be an almost-volunteer. Almost volunteering is the exact same as not volunteering at all.
Almost-volunteering is an interesting concept. So often we are presented with the opportunity to do good, but we have to move or we have ball games or we have to work or we have a garage sale or we have a hair appointment or we have tickets to a show or we have…and I understand that there are times when a conflict in scheduling disallows you from helping. But do you always have an excuse when it comes to volunteering your time? Do you always have a reason to not participate when asked to volunteer?
I have thought about the almost-volunteer. It is a defense mechanism designed to help our mind maintain a positive self-image in the light of non-participation in charity. It is a way for our mind to count our intent in the same light as actually having participated. In this way, the mind still maintains a positive self-image because we would have volunteered if we would not have had a conflict. In my opinion, the problem arises when you always have a conflict, yet justify your lack of action based on your intent.
I am not going to beat this topic to death, just wanted to present the thought.
My challenge is to evaluate your volunteering resume’. If you are an almost-volunteer you can change that by simply making a phone call to a local charity and signing up to help.
The self-fulfillment you so desperately seek will only be found when you step out of yourself and start to practice a life of charity.
Just a thought for a Monday morning…