Jeremy Statton

Living Better Stories

Be That Somebody Part 2: See the Need

6 Flares 6 Flares ×
This is the second in a series of articles titled Be That Somebody. If you missed Part 1 Hear the Stories, click here to read it. Many of us wait for somebody else in this world to show up to fix the problems that we see. In order to become that somebody, all we need to do is to decide and then to begin. I hope these articles help you make that choice.

The first step in becoming that somebody who makes a difference is hearing the stories of what others have done and are doing. Their stories inspire us. They create the sense of possibility. If they did it, why can’t I?

Many of us stop at the stories. We enjoy them. We are moved by them. Occasionally we even shed a tear. But hearing the stories alone will not create the passion needed to overcome the inertia of staying put.

There are two reasons the stories don’t change us. We don’t see the need. And we don’t make it personal.

The Need

The world is full of need.

There are those who are hungry and do not have enough food.

There are those who are sick, infected with HIV or malaria, and do not have the resources to get the medical care that would save their lives.

There are those who are orphaned and just need a mom and dad to love them.

There are those who have been trafficked and work as slaves of the sex industry becoming the objects of insatiable lust.

Those who are stranded at home due to illness and disability and need help with the basic necessities of life.

It is everywhere. In your backyard. Downtown. In developing countries. All over the world.

Do you see all of this need? Or do you insulate yourself from it?

Do you seek it out? Or do you you avoid it at all costs.

photo by Kerry L. Williams (Creative Commons)

Personalize the Need

Then once you allow yourself to see it, don’t just let it be “Somebody Else’s” problem. Make it yours.

Imagine what it would be like if it were you. Or one of your children.

What if life had been a little bit different. You were the one born in a poor, developing country. You were the one whose mother died when you were 2 because of HIV.

What if . . .

Put yourself in the shoes of another and feel their need as if it were your own.

Be That Somebody Step 2

The only way our hearts can be moved enough to start becoming the type of person that the word needs is to have a heart for the need of the world.

This week, go and see the need. Experience it first hand. Take off the blinders. Open your eyes to it.

This is your assignment. To see  and experience the need of others.

if you are unsure of what you can do, here are a few suggestions.

  • Volunteer at your local homeless shelter.
  • Find a group that makes house calls to those in need.
  • Find a mission group traveling to some other part of the world. (Although you can’t go this week, sign up today.)
  • Visit the homes of those who are dying with hospice.
  • Go to an orphanage. Play with the kids.
  • If you know someone who already is that somebody, join them on one of their adventures.

Until we feel the need of others in our hearts, we will remain the person that we are, refusing to become that somebody that the world needs.

If you have had an experience where you saw the need, then share your story with the rest of us.

If you perform the homework assignment, report back in the comments and tell us the need you witnessed.

You can leave a comment by clicking here.

 

About Jeremy Statton

Jeremy is a writer and an orthopedic surgeon. When not ridding the world of pain, he helps you live a better story. Follow him on Twitter or Facebook or Google +.

Want to live a better story?

If you enjoy reading these stories, consider subscribing to receive email updates. I’ll give you a free copy of my eBook Grace Is



18 Replies

  1. Our church sponsors a country for Compassion International. I kept procrastinating to sign up to sponsor one of the children, until we looked at the website “just to see who needs to be sponsored”. I was surprised and shocked that some of those kids had been waiting almost a year or more for a sponsor! I found a little girl who is seven years old and shares my name. We are trying to get out of debt, so honestly $38 a month does mean something to us, but it means so much more to this little girl. It made me think about how rich we are in America. We are so blessed and I believe God wants us to get out there and bless others instead of hoarding our wealth to ourselves. Sponsoring a child or going on a mission trip/volunteering definitely opens your eyes.

  2. Melissa, well done! That’s so exciting! When I started sponsoring my Compassion child, I was unemployed trying to live on the few and far between babysitting jobs. Yet still God has provided every single month. It’s been beautiful (though often nerve-wrecking) to be the provisions He’s got for my little girl.

    Katie

  3. I live in one of the poorest counties in my state. Yesterday we gave away free clothes in the “city” near us. It was one of those times when you’ve done something good but your heart still breaks because it doesn’t seem like enough (does it ever seem like enough?). It was a start. A very small start.

    Katie

  4. Awesome, Katie. Thanks for being that somebody.

  5. Compassion is a great ministry. We sponsor 4 kids ourselves. It is definitely worth every penny.

  6. Kapil Sopory

    You have personified empathy through your vivid descriptions in ” Realize the Need”. You are expressing painful reality which we witness around us day in and day out but to which we turn our back with an attitude of indifference. Many are too optimistic to have created  a mindset expressing to their core if not to others that they are immune to such calamities. As if they possess a licence that they are certified perpetual good -getters and could not suffer likewise. They live in a fool’s paradise and one can only pity their thought processes.
    I am doing my bit in the direction of helping the needy as far as possible but now your message has provided further impetus to expand my activities in this direction.
    The message will also be widely spread so that others also realize the needs and follow suit.

  7. Mike Zserdin

    Jeremy, these are my “favorite” posts of yours! Favorite equals challenging and inspirational. It’s even crazier when I get my kids involved. When they feel the need deeply and remind me of pain in the world after I’ve forgotten.

    Really appreciate your insight and thoughts you put into these posts.

    Mike

  8. Kids can be so honest and earnest. They don’t see the obstacles that we see. It’s fun to watch them ask questions like, “Well, why don’t we just stop that?”

  9. floyd

    A good reminder. Talk is cheap, real love is seen in action. Thanks for the great post and Ngina for recommending it!

  10. All any of us really want is to see love do.

  11. How you can encourage me? I’ve been angry at God at different times in my life, and now is one of them. I’m having a very difficult time medically and financially, and even though I feel I will get through it, I feel abandoned by God, and even disliked and punished. I know I have a lot to be grateful for, but life seems especially hard for me, needlessly so. How do I get past the anger? I’ve been told by others that God can handle my anger. But I don’t like feeling angry, don’t like it at all. I plan to try to meet as soon as I can with the pastor where I attend church (when I can). But you seem practical and caring.

  12. Dana B.

    How you can encourage me? I’ve been angry at God at different times in my life, and now is one of them. I’m having a very difficult time medically and financially, and even though I feel I will get through it, I feel abandoned by God, and even disliked and punished. I know I have a lot to be grateful for, but life seems especially hard for me, needlessly so. How do I get past the anger? I’ve been told by others that God can handle my anger. But I don’t like feeling angry, don’t like it at all. I plan to try to meet as soon as I can with the pastor where I attend church (when I can). But you seem practical and caring.

  13. Dana B.

    I try to help people who are right in my neighborhood and in my life. So I babysit (for free) for a friend who is a single mom to her adopted 5-year-old son. He makes MY life better! And I visit people in my neighborhood who are mostly housebound and try to help them with errands or just sitting and talking with them. I make regular visits to them so they can look forward to that. I can’t go too far afield because I have a chronic liver disorder (PSC) and lots of fatigue. But when I help someone else out, I feel better about life in general. And that’s what I want from life. There are people to help right around the corner – please tell others to look nearby!

  14. Incredible examples, Dana.

  15. Lee Steinbach

    We adopted two kids with special needs during the past 3 years. Our 5 kids are raising money to help a little girl named Haven on Reece’s Rainbow get adopted. We babysit a young boy with special needs so his widowed mother can have a break. Our kids are learning first hand what it means to live unselfishly.

  16. Wow, Lee. Incredible stuff. Thanks for sharing it.

  17. I think I got really good at “seeing the need”, but after a while I think I just got burnt out “personalizing the need”. I saw every need and wanted to “be that someone”, but when you try to be someone to everyone you end up being no one.

    That was my feeble attempt at sounding profound… how’d I do? 😉

  18. Good. It’s an excellent point. I come from the opposite perspective. Ignoring the need, so your thoughts are good.

Leave a Reply

6 Flares Twitter 3 Facebook 0 Google+ 2 Pin It Share 1 Buffer 0 6 Flares ×