Holiday 2011 - The Good Deed
When we hear some bad news, we often think, 'Oh I should really do something to help,' but frequently time or hesitation gets in the way and our good intentions go unheeded. Well, a few weeks ago I was privileged to see this thought turned into action and become the best Good Deed I've possibly ever witnessed. When one of the students at a local high school heard that his teacher had been diagnosed with cancer, he said, 'I immediately knew that I wanted to help him and his family. I look at our school as a family, and when one of our family members needs our help, we should be there to support them.'
Along with other students, this young man planned a carnival they called 'Super Smith Saturday.' I wasn't sure what to expect since the students only had a couple of weeks to pull it off. Events like this are usually planned for months in advance, with a big group of volunteers, many of whom are adults experienced in putting together major fundraising events. So when I arrived at the football field Saturday morning, it was with realistic expectations that there might be a few activities and maybe some food for sale. Instead, there were over a dozen booths, from face painting to ball toss and even a dunk-the-teacher booth. The concession stand was open, selling drinks, chips, and donuts, along with hot dogs and burgers grilled by dads. A silent auction table was heaped with gift baskets filled with all sorts of goodies. One of the students had even designed a t-shirt for the event (that he designed it and then had them made so quickly is pretty impressive). Whether parents and their kids were involved in soccer, baseball, scouting, or were neighbors, they came to support this beloved teacher and friend.
When the event ended and I passed by kids tearing down the booths and cleaning up, I realized these high school students had spent untold hours putting this benefit together -- planning it, advertising it, working the booths, and basically getting the job done, all in a manner of days. Besides raising over $11,000, these kids could feel the satisfaction of jumping in, working together, and following through on a goal. Their passion was evident and they never stopped to think that it might be too hard, too big, or that it was too daunting to even begin.
Too often when we think about helping someone out, we stop when we realize the work or time that it might entail. These thoughtful kids put their youthful enthusiasm and infectious attitude to work and produced something magical, something I hope to always keep in my heart. May we all learn a lesson here and jump in when needed so our hearts can lead us to our own good deeds.