Thursday, September 30, 2010

Can I get a witness?

"Nothin' keeps you honest like a witness." -Denver Moore, co-author of Same Kind of Different as Me

With this laptop screen and any of you reading this as my witness, I am making a promise to myself.  The time has come.  Doing more to help others is no longer a someday maybe thing.  It's no longer a Thanksgiving and Christmas or tax time thing.  I will no longer use my lack of passion for a single cause to take my time deciding what the perfect way will be for me to "give back" (when I get around to giving back).  How ridiculous.  There is just too much need and no time to waste.  

I have to laugh at how much time I have put into analyzing different causes and volunteer possibilities. It has been half procrastination and half a terribly (and embarrassingly) self-absorbed way of approaching the idea of giving.  It's been an objective or action item on a self-improvement list for longer than I care to admit.  I'd ask myself, "What are you uniquely able to contribute to your community?"  Tonight I ask myself, "How did you get so confused?   Who cares?"  Just do something.

This moment of clarity has come to me from the book I just finished, the one quoted above.  It is one of the few books that I will not soon, if ever, forget.  My very best friend - since junior high school best friend - recommended it and I must thank her.  Same Kind of Different as Me is a moving and true story about an international art dealer who befriends a homeless man.  For several chapters in a row I sat reading and openly weeping.  I won't say more about the story, but I finished it inspired to get off my ass and do something for someone in need.  And I will.

Two weeks ago I received an email about a local food pantry with bare cupboards.  Tomorrow I am going to Sam's Club and then straight to the pantry.  Every time I stock up my household, I am going to stock up for the food pantry.  And tomorrow when I deliver the food I am going to ask what else I can do to help. 

It's a start. 

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