Most people think that people who volunteer often and enjoy community service are doing it for the attention, scholarships, and overall boost in self-image. That may be true for a really small percentage of volunteers, but what about the rest of us? I’m talking about the people who are literally designed for the service of others, who genuinely set out to live their lives for other people.
Yes, we exist, and it’s nothing like you would think.
1. It’s a spiritual gift, an actual part of your personality.
In the Bible, it’s stated several times that each person has a special talent, a gift that they are given to help and better the lives of others (Romans 12:4-8, I Corinthians 12:8-10, I Peter 4:11). It’s not something that develops overnight; this kind of zeal for helping others is part of your character. You don’t do service because your parents/friends/teachers said you have to. It makes you truly happy to see other people benefit from betterment in their lives.
2. You can’t sit around and watch other people work.
It’s like an itch that can’t be satisfied. You can’t seem to be able to say no to anyone who asks you to help them with a project, and you’re usually the only one excited when a friend or neighbor asks for volunteers to help them with something. Even if it’s mundane, boring work, you still enjoy it and can’t imagine spending your time anywhere else. You have the mindset that it needs to be done, therefore someone will benefit from it!
3. People tend to shame you.
Often labeled as a try-hard, a “goodie two shoes”, a saint, et cetera, it becomes really hard to admit that your passion is in helping others. Most people expect you to do volunteer work for the attention and the praise, because we live in an age of instant gratification. Especially with long-term projects, it’s hard for a lot of people to understand that the rewards aren’t seen right away... or at all. It’s easy to let all the negativity get in your way, but just remember that most of society doesn’t see life through service-tinted glasses, the way you do.
4. Most of the time, your service is unnoticed or unappreciated.
Lots of people with a heart for service are the behind-the-scenes operators of life, the ones pushing from behind to make others’ lives great. It’s a thankless job, but you still find a passion in it. You don’t have to have a parade in your honor or even a pat on the back to know that you helped someone. You’re fulfilled by the actual act itself, not what anyone else thinks about your work. It makes you happy to see change happening, and ultimately, that’s what service is all about to you.
5. But at the end of the day, it’s all worth it.
Though it may sometimes be misunderstood, having a heart for service is actually kind of amazing. Seeing little acts transform into blessings for other people is truly a wonderful thing. It’s one of the best feelings in the world to be able to help someone in need, even if it’s only in a small way. So don’t be afraid to admit that you have a heart for service! Everyone needs a little of your selfless passion in their lives.