Hello, again, my kind and compassionate amigo...
This week a hero of mine passed on, Jean Vanier. He was 90 years old.
Vanier started a little community, L'Arche, for disabled and mentally challenged people around one simple idea: friendship.
L’Arche (the ark) grew to what is now a global movement with 150 communities in 38 countries supporting 3,500+ people.
Vanier saw a real need and met that need.
Thousands of lives changed. Communities built. Humanity restored.
What about you? What could you do with your one little life?
Without having a knee-jerk reaction thinking there was some special-saint-like-hero quality that Vanier had which you are missing. Pause for a moment and ask yourself one simple question:
What specific need around you captures your imagination and heart?
Your little life can have a ripple effect for generations if you have the courage to dream and do something with that dream.
You don't have to know where to start. Or, come up with some robust plan of action. All you have to do is act.
Vanier moved in with two mentally disabled men in a run-down house in a village just north of Paris not because it was practical or mapped. He simply befriended them. And, the community grew.
His goal was never to start a global movement.
It was simply to do the next right thing.
You see, amigo, life is pretty simple. It's us who complicate things.
So let me share with you one of the best pieces of advice I've ever been given: If you see a need, meet that need.
Don't grow deaf and blind to the needs of others. Don't get so preoccupied with yourself that you don't have time to serve others. Don't shy away from getting your hands dirty.
Life is messy. Inconvenient. And, demanding.
Sounds a lot like you (and me), if you stop and think about it?
I'll leave you with one of my favorite quotes by Vanier:
“We human beings are all fundamentally the same. We all belong to a common, broken humanity. We all have wounded, vulnerable hearts. Each one of us needs to feel appreciated and understood; we all need help.”
Here's to following that wounded and vulnerable heart of yours...
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