“One of the great ironies of life is this: He or she who serves, almost always benefits more than he or she who is served.”- Gordon Hinckle
January 2016 marked an important start into my career as a Public Relations personnel. Prior to that month, I was in-between jobs and things were not looking pretty with me. I had submitted my CV in several places with extensive follow-up; yet all efforts were to no avail. But as God will have it, a community service programming was organized by an NGO which was run by my friend’s uncle in Lagos; so, I decided to participate in the campaign so as not to be idle. My name was short-listed for the three days campaign designed to sanitize people on hepatitis B. I met a lot of people during the campaign; and the amazing thing is that my first experienced job in a PR firm was initiated through a man I met at this campaign.
The message in my story is that sometimes, we get the answer to the things we want in the place of service. Many people have different motives about community service/volunteer work especially because there may not be any financial reward attached to it; but these acts of service usually position you in a place of advantage or open doors to the next level where you want to be in life or in your career.
For instance, an organization can embark on community service to build loyalty while some may give back to the society with the intention to secure approval and acceptance within their community. No matter how we want to view community service, we can’t succinctly know one’s intention of volunteering for the benefit of the community. But, to really enjoy the emotional benefits of giving back to the society, the condition of our heart matters. There is no feeling that could be compared to making someone else happy; it lightens the body and refreshes the heart. No wonder Jesus said in John 4:34, “My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and to finish it.” In order words, a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of things he possesses only. Imagine such deep satisfaction and knowledge Jesus had when he said “it is finished” on the cross – the assurance that he has completed the purpose for which he was sent.
Research reveals that giving and volunteering helps to reduce stress and depression and it also promotes healthy social connections and a sense of purpose.
What is community service?
This is a non-paying job performed by one person or a group of people for the benefit of the community.
Here are few benefits of community service:
- it improves your mood.
- it serves as a stepping stone towards achieving set goals
- it boosts self-esteem
- it triggers stress-free hormones
- it helps to improve your community
- it helps to build unity & togetherness
Have you been job hunting and wondering when that dream job will come? Are you trying to get into a business but can’t find the right business partners? Maybe it’s time to serve in your community and render acts of service to make impact in the lives of other people. You can never underestimate the calibre of people you meet when you volunteer or do a community service. The person you have been looking for may just be in the same place where you are serving. Remember, don’t limit God!
Serve others to be able to serve yourself.
Written by Seyi Shoyemi.
Image credit – www.cranstoun.org