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Posts Tagged ‘altruism’

(Photograph by Edwin Redrino)

I don’t watch a lot of TV so I was oblivious to the heartbreaking tragedy that took many innocent lives on Monday until a co-worker pointed it out to me when I arrived at work later that day.  Just a couple of weeks prior to the incident, I was at the exact location where the hostage-taking unfolded, sight seeing and touring the area with a foreign friend. 

In retrospect, I thought how desperate a measure it was that the man took hostages in an attempt to bring back whatever dignity was left of him. I wonder if he had a chance to ponder about the serious repercussions of his plan. Was he able to think about the numerous lives that might have been lost? The many hearts that will be broken? I wonder if he had a chance to get down on his knees to pray for guidance and comfort. I wonder if he received enough support from his family and friends before he committed his fatal act. Clearly, he wasn’t in his proper frame of mind when he did what he did. It was an unfortunate tragedy that left many people saddened, angry, and some scarred for a lifetime.   


In a similar scenario this week, I witnessed how an act of unselfish service blessed the lives of two women who had been through a recent traumatic shooting incident themselves involving loved ones and friends. Someone in a position to help quietly went out of their way to offer comfort and lift the trauma off these women’s distressed minds. I witnessed the real meaning of charity come to life and was deeply touched by what I saw. It was the gospel in action. I wish the hostage-taker had someone like this person reach out to him during his contemplative moments so he didn’t end up doing what he did. But then now it’s too late.        


I sympathize with the families of those whose lives have been lost in such a senseless manner. I wish that those who have passed on have already lived their lives to the fullest and have already accomplished what they came here on earth to do.


In the darkest moments of our lives, it is good to remember that there is always light at the end of the tunnel. That we will not be given anything we won’t be able to bear. That there is help if we but seek it. Heavenly Father is there for us. He is the Father of our spirits and He loves us beyond our comprehension. He will help us when all else fails and we’ve done all that we could. Despite our many challenges and trials, our lives don’t have to end in any kind of tragedy. We can rise above the blues. Our Father wants us to succeed in all aspects of our lives. And He is there watching…and waiting. We just have to reach out to Him.  

  

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(Photograph by Edwin Redrino)

 

While sitting on the pew behind them, I watched how a loving, young mother tried to gently keep her toddler from fussing during one reverent sacrament meeting. After attempting several different techniques that worked only a few minutes, she reached into her bag to offer her daughter a lollipop. It seemed to work instantly as the charming little girl climbed up to her and placed her head on her mother’s shoulder while enjoying her candy.

 

A little boy sitting right next to them watched intently as the girl relished her sweet treat. He gazed at her without flinching for about five minutes. When the little girl noticed his stare, she took the lollipop from her mouth and without any hesitation offered it to him. The little boy paused, looked at the lollipop, and then gladly took it. They both smiled and kept silent for the rest of the meeting.

 

I sat there in awe after what I witnessed. Adults surely will think it’s an unhygienic practice but it was the principle behind that blew my mind away. What a pure example of selflessness!!! I didn’t sense any regret from the little girl when she offered the one thing that she enjoyed most to someone that she thought would enjoy it more.

 

How light and wonderful life would be if adults could practice that principle as well—unselfishness. Let us keep in mind that it is more blessed to give than to receive. Life is too short to keep it all to ourselves. We have not enough time to hoard it all. Be it our time, our talents, our affection, our resources, let us choose a better way.   

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