Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Service Tag! You're IT!

I got tagged in another blog to share some of my experiences about Service. I'm honored. And what a great time of year to share such experiences.
Here are ther rules I was given:

1. Tell a story of when you had service done to you
2. Tell about a time when you did some service
3. Tell us about when you saw someone do some service to yet another person
4. Tag 5 other bloggers to do the same.

Oh, here we go.

A few years ago a bunch of my friends were throwing a birthday party for me. A couple of hours before the party I got into a car accident and smashed the front drivers side of my car. Turns out, I had a pretty bad concussion. My bishop and his family were to baby sit my daughter over night as the birthday party would be running pretty late. I called him to let him know we were in a car accident and that I probably wouldn't be going to the bday party. He actually offered to keep my daughter over night and encouraged me to go to the party, instead of sitting at home in pain trying to stay away all night. (It was one of those concussions where you have to be able to say awake or wake up easily for the next 12 hours or so) I had already called my friends and told them I was in a car accident, had a pretty bad concussion and wouldn't be able to make the party. Much to my suprize they called me back and told me someone would be picking me up for the party and to dress comfortably. I was hesitant but agreed.

When I got to the party, there were about 20 0f my friends there. A couple of them had flown in from California and Seattle for the party, 2 of them drove from Reno to be there. Much to my suprise when I got to my friends house who was hosting the party, I walked in and there were pillows, sleeping bags and folks dressed in pajamas. Upon hearing that I had a concussion and needed to pretty much stay up all night, they came prepared to take shifts in keeping me awake.
It was a fun and difficult night. I remember being so tired that I was beggin one of my friends to take all the money in my wallet and let me sleep just 30 minutes. He looked down at me with tears in his eyes and said... "I can't.... I don't want you to wake up dead!" lol

Right now it may not seem like service since there was a party of sorts. But to me at that time in my life, I needed a stellar group of people to be associated with. Never have I had so many peope during that time show so much love and care for me... and my daughter. I always reflect back on that time when I think of service. It wasn't money or material things they gave to aide me. It was simply their time, themselves which really is the greatest of all gifts and when it's needed the most is when it's usually the least convenient.

On of my favorite memories on giving service happened when I was just out of High School. We had a rather large family in the ward. The Husband, Brother Denninghoff was in the Military and rarely home. There were 7 kids. We started baby sitting for them for years. The wife , Sister Denninghoff was my idol. She made her own bread, peanut butter could make ends meet, found time to spend with all her kids who were never lacking even in social graces. Whatever she was doing, she was doing every well. I enjoyed being around her and her family. One Friday my sister and I decided to go over and kick Sister Denninghoff out of her house so she could have the whole day to do what she wanted, and my sister and I would watch all the kids for her, no charge.
The rules were she had to do something she WANTED to do, not had to do unless if was absolutely needed. She was so floored and confused about the whole thing that she sat in her drive way for 30 minutes, not knowing what it was like to have a whole day to herself. She hadn't had one day to herself for about 15 years. Finally she did leave and my sister and I have a fabulous time with the kids. We bbq'd, swam in the pool, made cookies, cleaned the house, did the dishes, went on a hike. For us it was just a day playing with the Denninghoff kids. When she did return home the house was clean, the kids were well fed changed, a couple of them sleeping. Dinner was cooked all she really had to do was come home and relax. When we left forthe day she tried to pay us. We threw a $2o bill back and forth for about an hour. When we left we found it on our car floor. So we took it and bought her flowers with it.
Our parents always taught us to do something for someone else that we would appreciate ourselves. I don't think I really understood what an impact something like that can have until I became a mom myself. True I only have one child, but I can imagine how it must be with someone with 7 kids. Or even 4. I know she really really was appreciative that day. And it was one of my funnest memories of days gone by.

I think one of the greatest acts of Service I ever witness and happen to be a part of was the LDS Genesis Group and their Service at Camp Williams with the Hurricane Katrina Survivors who were brought in. The LDS Genesis Branch was called in by the Office Of Black Affairs with many other Black Church groups in the community to be hands on and in the front lines in the effort to serve them while here in Utah. It was important for them to see friendly black faces as such a cultural shock of Utah could do even more harm to their psyche. The LDS Genesis Group (and many others) Helped hand out clothes and other needed materials on a daily basis. Some of us were there so much people thought we were hurricane survivors. We took them around the city, to job interviews, apartment hunting. Helped them put together furnature after they moved in, Took them grocery shopping, to Dr appointments and so on. Many awards and recognitions were given out to other churches and organizations but the LDS Genesis Group was not given much recognition at all. I would have to say what I witnessed the 4 weeks I spent up there everyday was some of the greatest Kindnesses I've ever witnessed in my life.

So there you have it. It may not be much in what some consider service, but these experiences have touched and changed my life for the better.

I would like to tag:
http://sugar-grenade.blogspot.com/ (Laura)
http://lefthandedinmyrightmind.blogspot.com/ (Adonis)
http://brentito.blogspot.com/ (Brent)
http://all-things-testify.blogspot.com/ (Beth)
http://rubyg.blogspot.com/ (Joy)
http://thoughtsofmark.blogspot.com/ (Mark)

I did and extra one for good luck


Mark Mo' Boy said...

These are great stories! Thanks for picking it up and passing it on!

ShaBANG said...

Thanks Mark. I'm glad I ran across your blog yesterday.

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