I Believe in Helping

Haley - Monticello, Kentucky
Entered on September 29, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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I Believe In Helping

I’m walking down one of Memphis’ most crime infested streets and I’m being followed by a gang of kids. The only thing I have to protect me is another sixteen year old boy walking next to me. I’m crazy, right? Well no; actually far from it. These kids I’ve got following me are headed to the same place I am: bible school. That’s right; I take one week out of almost every summer for the past five years to go on a mission trip with my church. This year it’s to Tennessee and it’s my job traipse the streets of downtown Memphis in 100 degree weather and go door-to-door trying to convince kids to come to bible school with me (all while trying to avoid being shot and/or mugged, keep in mind).

To most people, this probably wouldn’t sound like the most fun way to spend their summer, but for me, I wouldn’t trade this experience for the world. The kids that attend our bible school are so diverse but you hear a lot of the same story. Usually one of the parents are gone, or drinking all the time, or beats on them, or any combination of the three. We’re told every morning that all we have to do its love on the kids. They come from broken and impoverished homes and sometimes a hug is all they need. The kids I met in Memphis changed my life and made me really appreciate the life I left back at home. They taught me to be thankful for the family I have and made me realize how much I taken them for granted.

Coming home, I took a long look at my life, and how I live it. I realized that when I was helping those kids, I felt good. Not only about myself and with what I had accomplished, but I could feel that those kids taught me a lesson that I needed to learn. Helping someone in need is one of the most satisfying feelings in the world. I believe that in helping others, you really help yourself. I now look at life through thankful eyes and know in my heart that the greatest gift I can give, is giving, itself.

Haley