Remembering Dr. King: Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve


Martin Luther King, Jr.
Cover of Martin Luther King, Jr.

“You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.

Today, we celebrate the Civil Rights Leader, Dr. Martin Luther King , Jr. In honor of him, today is a day of service. But the truth is we all have an opportunity to serve every day. When you get up in the morning and go to work, you are encountering service all along the way. As you take the train, the person who collects your fare is in service of you. The person driving the train is in service of all the passengers. Even the man who washed and swept the platform is performing a necessary service for your well-being.

When you stop to get your morning coffee, the barista who takes your order and pours your java is in service to the patrons. The man who set up that newspaper you paid for that provides you the news. The people who wrote the news that is on the newspaper. The security guard in your building. All around you are people who are in service of others. We are an connected system of givers. You may not look at it that way. We title it business and forget that it is giving. Without that person in place performing that action, the system could not run as smoothly as it does. One action can’t be completed without the previous action and the action that follows. We are all in service of one another.

The service continues when you come home. If you stop to pick up food, the food servers and cashiers are in service of you. If you go to the supermarket, someone stocked the shelves in the wee hours of the morning and hung displays. If you are drinking a bottle of wine, someone tended the vine to create that bottle. A truck shipped that bottle from the vineyard in California to the store where you are  and was driven for hours by someone. As you pick your children up from daycare, the daycare workers are in service of your children. If you pick them up from school, they are taught by teachers. And, if your husband or wife prepared dinner, they are in service of the family.

We all serve one another on a daily basis. We may take it for granted because it’s  a part of our daily interactions which move so seamlessly that you don’t think about it. But, today, take a moment to notice the network of people who make life possible for you. And, maybe, take a moment to nod or smile and acknowledge their contribution. A smile can be a simple act of service to someone who needs it that day.

“Those who are not looking for happiness are the most likely to find it, because those who are searching forget that the surest way to be happy is to seek happiness for others.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.

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