Today’s Seva story #32 of 100 comes from Rebecca who lives on Maui. Seva means selfless service for the benefit of community and the environment. I am collecting and sharing 100 stories to spread positive news, get ideas and inspiration.
Rebecca writes: “For Christmas day I signed up our whole family to serve a meal to the homeless at Hale Kau Kau, the soup kitchen at St. Theresa Catholic church in Kihei. I had served there once for Thanksgiving several years ago, and wanted my four children to have the opportunity to serve others. We all can get so wrapped up in the materialism of Christmas, that I wanted our family to be able to reach out to others, and come to know the true spirit of Christmas giving. It is always a miracle to see how our small service to others is a bigger blessing to us than to the people whom we served food.
When we arrived at Hale Kau Kau, the spirit was festive, the volunteers were all exuberant. Folks were dressed up and seemed happier to be there serving food than if they were the honored guests at a fancy party. It is true, that serving others just makes us happy. As the people who came for dinner began trickling in, I was surprised at how many of them I knew from the community. Classmates of my children, families who go to story time at the library, all were there for a hot meal and gifts to be given out.
Our part in serving food was easy, and 3 of my 4 children really enjoyed taking plates back and forth, bringing people their drinks and dessert. One of my sons didn’t quite understand why we had to be there serving others, but I hope as he matures, that he will remember this experience, and know that true joy comes not from self-indulgence, rather from lifting up others and helping to bring them dignity.”