Yesterday my 12 yr old son did 3hrs of community service by working at a market for a local charity.
This was not done from the goodness of his heart at least not yet, as it is compulsory for year 7’s at his school. What a wonderful idea I believe. We know from ancient teachings that by doing certain activities even against our will we often come to appreciate the activity and go on to do it with our own freewill later on.
I could visibly see my son enjoying the accolades from people in the community thanking him for his efforts.
It also got me thinking about some of our friends and acquaintances who always seem to be giving to the community at the expense of their own personal and family time.
My wife and I are community people and do our fair share to help. However I am far from selfless. I tend to pull back when I sense the service has encroached too far. I am mindful of keeping a balance. Does this mean I am placing to much SELF into the equation?
I think the answer is partly yes, but I have noticed that there can also be a lot of EGO in being the selfless community man/women. The constant patting on the back from the community can be just as big a drug as running to the pub every night.
Bottom line: balance is the name of the game. Having said that, I tip my hat to all those community minded people without you we would never have a functioning society.