Small Steps to Make a Big Impact

JUNE 25, 2019  /  MEREDITH NICELY  / 

Small Steps to Make a Big Impact
When I first heard the song, "Dream Small" by singer-songwriter Josh Wilson, I had mixed emotions. Even the title is counter-cultural. The next line, though, was so refreshing. It said, "Don't buy the lie that you have to do it all."
How can we incorporate this truth into our lives as we strive to care for others with meals, volunteer in our community and serve those in need?
Martin Luther King once said, "Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'" I've found I can't help everyone, but the main priority is using the time I do have to make a difference.
Do you have a passion to reach out but don't know where to start? Here are some tips to find opportunities that match your skills and talents.
Start small and with an interest
Do you enjoy cooking? Reach out to a family in need by providing a meal or offer to create a meal schedule and invite others to help. Maybe you are being nudged to step up and start a meal ministry program at your church, school or work. Volunteer to help a grieving family coordinate a memorial service meal using Do you enjoy reading? Consider volunteering your time to read to children. Is teaching your passion? Consider volunteering your time to help with a class at your church or local school. Find friends who share your interest and start volunteering together!
Be willing to learn and try new things
In your career, be willing to train and learn new techniques and ideas. These skills transfer well into the volunteer world. My background is in marketing, public relations and human resources. The same skills that have helped me represent my company at job fairs allow me to represent my church as a volunteer in a local mission. Our annual trunk or treat may seem all fun and games, but it provides a safe and friendly environment to our community. If I had not been willing to put on a costume and jump outside of my comfort zone, our group would not have made a difference. Keep expanding your horizons at work and home. Try new tested recipes, volunteer somewhere new and never stop learning!
Use your network to find the right match
Ask yourself, who inspires me by their actions? Is there something they are doing you could contribute to as well? I've found volunteering with a group of friends brings multiple talents to the organization and takes the burden off accomplishing something all on your own. In times of discouragement a group of friends can keep your spark alive for your passion. Another great source is your job. Does your company support a local charity or organization? My husband's company encourages its employees to be involved in veterans' organizations, youth sports, disaster relief and the Toys for Tots program. Becoming involved with your company's volunteer efforts is a great way to connect with a contact person that can match your skills with a need.
Search the world's largest volunteer network
The founder of Points of Light Foundation, George H. W. Bush, shared a vision "of all the community organizations that are spread like stars throughout the Nation, doing good." To search for volunteer ideas on Points of Light, visit here. You can choose your area of interest and type in your zip code, and the site will display a list of opportunities. Points of Light inspires people to get involved, helps people find their best match and equips volunteers with the skills and tools they need to succeed.
May we each find small ways to make a big impact! From the song lyrics "Dream Small" and my encouragement to you, "Keep loving, keep serving, keep listening, keep learning..."
Listen to the song here.
About the author - Meredith Nicely is a home-school mom to two boys and passionate about serving others through a home-cooked meal and her community involvement. She lives in Virginia with her husband, Bobby Nicely, and their two sons. She usually can be found in her home creating lesson plans and meal plans all while sneaking in podcasts and Netflix binges. When outside the home she loves to attend sporting events and connect with families at her church.
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Adina & Maureen
Adina & Maureen

Welcome! We're thrilled you stopped by. Our own joys and sorrows have taught us that a well-timed meal delivered by a friend is one of the best gifts imaginable. In this space, we share our favorite recipes to take to friends, meal-taking tips, and other ways to care for those who are dear to you.

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