What does it mean to serve? Serving can be volunteering, but at it’s root, serving is giving. It’s giving your time, energy, focus, your talents, or maybe even giving up something else for someone. 4-H was a huge part of my life for 16 years and really helped shape me into a woman of character. One of 4-H’s main principles is to “give your hands to larger service”, so I found myself rooted in serving for the majority of my life.
Being honest here I did sometimes dread going or would rather spend the day relaxing, but once I got there I would get so fired up and excited I couldn’t imagine spending my day any other way. Now as a 24 year old woman, I’m realizing the depth of what serving really means. God is a giver. Not only has He given us everything, but He gave His only Son (John 3:13) and we as Christians have His giving nature within us.
“So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.” – 2 Corinthians 9:7
We were created to be givers! Not only that, but serving allows us to step outside of ourselves and focus on the needs of others. It allows us to shift our focus away from the pressing needs in our life and help to relieve the needs of another. You are the blessing, the light, and maybe the answer someone is looking for. Jesus was a servant and demonstrated this. He washed the feet of his disciples. This was the lowest of jobs for a slave in that time. For Jesus to get on his knees and wash the (probably very dirty, very smelly) feet of his disciples was an act of service and humility that is hard to fathom for many of us. He even washed the feet of Judas, the man He knew would shortly betray Him for money. He exhibited a true servant heart and we should follow His example.
In thinking of serving, I wanted my very accomplished 15 year old cousin to share a little about what serving means to her. Hanna volunteers much of her time throughout the week in the midst of balancing excellent grades and a busy home schedule. What she shares here doesn’t even come close to telling all that she really does for others. Hanna’s heart to make others feel included at her age is very special. As someone who didn’t really feel included at her age, I greatly admire her heart to stand up and include those who would normally be overlooked. So I am so happy to now introduce to you Miss Hanna Peterson as she shares what serving means to her…
Hi, my name is Hanna. I am Sydney’s cousin, currently a freshman and am super excited to be writing something for her blog! I do a bunch of volunteer work…I would say I volunteer around six hours a week. I volunteer at the hospital close to me, I teach Sunday school class for kindergartners and first graders, and I help at the elementary school in my school district.
I love to volunteer. It takes a lot of time, but it’s totally worth it. It’s really cool to be able to have such a positive impact on my community. I love meeting new people and building special bonds with those I meet. One of my favorite experiences at the hospital was was getting to talk to an elderly man while we were waiting for his car. He told me all about his granddaughters and the trouble they get into. It put the biggest smile on his face sharing with me. I think it’s really important for everyone to get involved in some kind of volunteer work. It is a great and humbling experience.
Here are some ways you can get involved in your community:
- Find an organization you are passionate about
- Connect on their website
- Usually places who accept volunteers have a special volunteer tab (from my experience), with a form detailing what you can do and areas they need help in
- Start volunteering!!
I hope you all have enjoyed Hanna’s insight and hope that you too can find a way to bless others with your time, talents, abilities, and love. Have a wonderful week!