I Believe That by Serving Others, You Can Bring Hope to the Hopeless

Lisa - Wheaton, Illinois
Entered on December 17, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I am now in my senior year of high school. Since eighth grade, I have gone on a mission’s trip every summer. As I look back on each of those trips I realize that I, in some way, have made a difference in someone else’s life. I believe in serving others compassionately and whole-heartedly.

Two summers ago, I went down to New Orleans a few months after Hurricane Katrina hit. We helped with hurricane relief by gutting and fixing up a bunch of houses. One of the days, a few of us were assigned to go build and paint a new porch for a lady named Mrs. Hood. Little did we know, Mrs. Hood was 102 years old.

We arrived at the small house and went straight to work. While we were working, Mrs. Hood walked up to the door to see how we were doing.

“I just wanted to thank ya’ll for building this; the porch looks great,” Mrs. Hood told us.

None of us could believe how healthy and lively Mrs. Hood was for her age. She sat and kept us company while we hammered away in the thick Louisiana air. While we were painting, we began to sing worship songs together. As we finished our well-constructed porch, I noticed that Mrs. Hood looked a little upset. I asked her if everything was alright.

“Oh, everything is wonderful,” she said, a little teary eyed. “These? These are tears of joy.”

“Well, I am so happy that we could build this for you, Mrs. Hood,” I told her.

“I really do love my new porch, “she said as she looked at it, “but I am truly happy because I never thought that I would live to see the day when blacks and whites stood together and worshiped our God as one.”

By the look in her eyes, I could tell that Mrs. Hood’s heart had been touched. She had been alive for over a century and had experienced events that we can now only read in text books. I realized right at that moment that by serving Mrs. Hood, I hadn’t only helped her out tremendously, but I had changed her life. By giving your heart to those who are weak and lost, you will bring them new hope. This I believe.