Most people ask themselves, “What is the meaning of life?” That in itself is a much larger question when trying to figure out life’s meaning. But how about if we take that down a notch and just focus on something smaller. What is the value of “A” life? Or even further yet, we can take a look into the soul that we reside with every waking and sleeping moment we are in existence and ask the question, “what is the value of my life?”
Say to yourself, “what is the value of my life?”….. Okay, say to yourself again, “what is the value of my life?”. Now, answer yourself. “WHAT IS THE VALUE OF YOUR LIFE?” Do you have a meaningful, thoughtful, serious, answer that makes sense? Can you unequivocally look at yourself in the mirror and say you are truly happy and 100% satisfied with the answer you provided? I have known people throughout my life who have asked themselves that question and within a period of time that person have decided to expire their life. Now I don’t mean to be insensitive here but that’s reality and maybe because of this, sharing something here may bring meaning into their lives they never knew existed.
The other day, I was thinking to myself and I was trying figure out the one most single important thing in my life that I have accomplished and that someone will benefit from. Low and behold, I could not think of one important single act that will impact others after I am gone. Nothing earth shattering here. Nothing to write home about or that I can brag about. Gee, not even something noteworthy that I can come home and share with my spouse. I ask myself, what value do I add to life? In essence and in the views of others, my life could be considered meaningless. I add nothing. I bring nothing of value to others. What value is this thing we call life and why do we continue to push forward. Perhaps now is the time to “cash out” in life and then maybe those around me will remember me for something, even if it means something devastating and hurtful.
Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way a psychologist or psychiatrist. I do not have a degree in any mental health field nor do I claim to know the psyche of others. But what I do know is that sometimes the littlest of things that are shared can sometimes change the world for others. And most of what I am talking about here does not even address those who are on the verge of suicide. The people I am talking more about are those who become depressed, lose their job because of this thought process, lose their families because of this, and in all reality decline away from society as vital contributing members.
In order to be in a society that not only exists but instead thrives, it needs active people who contribute on a daily basis. We’re not talking about the scientists who find a cure for a disease or the engineer who puts a man on the moon or not even the politician who provided a nation with the ability to survive. Yep, that’s right, there are very few of those people who bring value to life on the scale we would all love to achieve. I’m talking about the every day man and woman who provide the small doses. So we have to say to ourselves, “chances are, most of us will never be the rock star contributors.” But what we can be, is what I love to refer to as, “Agents of Change.”
Agents of change are those of us on a daily basis who make up the majority of our society who add value in little doses. Small amounts over time add up to big change. Everyone wants to cash in on the big dollar ticket items. But that’s not an option. We can’t all be rock stars. We have to settle with being every day common folk. It’s who we are.
So let’s take a look at what value we add. Like I said before, in order for a society to thrive, you need individual small dose contributors on a grandioso scale over a large period of time. Why? Because it’s the every day “Joe” who makes this happens. You and I.
If you will, for just comparison of your life compared to others around you, look at your own life the same way I measure my life. I am 50 years old and still do not have that one single “Rock Star” moment in life and probably never will. What I do have is a wife and 5 wonderful step kids. Three of who have reached adulthood and two who are almost there (13 & 16). I have had a wonderful career that has spanned almost 33 years in the aerospace industry. Served in the U.S. Marine Corps. Contributed a good portion of time volunteering for the service of others so that those I serve may enjoy life and I am always looking for the next opportunity to serve. I have a wife whom I put on a pedestal and spoil as much as possible. This is just a small sample of every (little) thing I have accomplished over time but again, it’s all little stuff. Nothing meaningful in and of itself. But when you think about the lives that have been changed over time, it proves that even the little things in life add to become huge.
A huge portion of being an agent of change also aligns with Servant Leadership. “The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first.” We are not on this earth to be served, but better yet to serve. We are commanded by God to just, “Love.” Sometimes we all find this hard to do as our selfishness gets in the way and right away we start thinking, about ourselves instead of others.
I look around and what I see is success. I see what God has provided me and I see riches beyond what I thought I could ever achieve. I don’t have a lot of material things, nor do I have a huge bank account with a limitless amount of funds. What I do have is people in my life who care. I have exactly what I need to survive and the ability to give to others. I have what God has given me and try daily not to squander what he has provided. We need to look at life as a passage in time and not the end game.