"Jesus Christ said, 'Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends' (John 15:13). This doesn't mean we have to die to show our love for our friends. We lay down our lives every time we put someone else's needs before our own. (And the 'friends' mentioned in the scripture above can be understood to be everyone we meet, since Jesus also commanded us to 'love one another.')
"We lay down our lives through service. Church members have many opportunities to serve. We can do small acts of kindness for our neighbors, take part in community service, fulfill responsibilities within our local congregations or contribute to the Church's large-scale humanitarian efforts. These actions, whether great or small, let us feel the happiness of connecting with our brothers and sisters and remind us that God often allows us to be the answer to someone else’s prayers." (Mormon.org/service)
I know that service to others brings so much happiness into our lives. From a young age my parents taught me the importance of serving others, and how to do it. From helping at every move and planned service project in the ward, to quietly helping others in time of need, to reaching out to the community and sharing the light of Christ.
I have loved to do service, yes, I like many teenagers had my moments where I didn't see the point if I wasn't getting an immediate reward. However, I learned that the rewards from selfless service are great. The happiness that it brings to me and those I serve is enough for me! Two of my favorite yearly service opportunities were the City Clean up Day, and the Christmas Basket Project. At these two projects I got to see directly the blessings and happiness that it brought into the lives of those we served. My great friend, Cathee was the one in the community who organized these two projects. She is not a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but she knows the importance of helping others. I got to work closely with her over the years and grew to love her greatly. One summer she asked me to do something for her, and I could not say no. She asked me to be a youth representative on the Board of Directors for the Hughson Family Resource Center. I then spent many hours volunteering at the center and helping others who were less fortunate than I. I also had the great opportunity to team up with other youth in the community to help make the lives of youth and children in our town better!
It was such a great experience for me, I learned and grew so much through that service. I am eternally grateful for Cathee and others who gave me a chance, as a youth to grow and be blessed through service. For I know that "when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God." (Mosiah 2:17).
To read the Previous Posts in the Series and learn about upcoming posts, check out the Series Page.