Monday, December 22, 2008

Serving Others Brings Happiness

My younger children were delighted when big fluffy snowflakes started dropping from the sky this morning. They are already out of school for the holidays. I started worrying.

First I worried about my high school senior. I was grateful that the high schoolers had headed to school before the storm started. Then I worried about my wife and me, since we had to drive about 15 miles to an appointment a couple of hours into the storm. I worried about my Mom-in-law, who was out shopping in the mess. I worried about my Mom, who had driven to a doctor appointment. And, of course, I worried about all the snow removal work that would need to happen.

When the time arrived for us to go driving in the snow, I was grateful for four-wheel drive. Say what you will about 4WD SUVs, but they are most useful in managing road travel in conditions such as those we experienced today. Despite messy roads, we fared just fine.

The huge fluffy snowflakes were still dropping in massive quantities when we arrived home. I usually like to wait until the storm finishes before I start doing snow removal. But I figured I’d go ahead and start anyway. After wrapping up my driveway and walks, I ended up working my way to several neighbors that have health conditions.

When one lady expressed gratitude, I told her that when God blesses you with a snow blower and a day off work when it happens to snow, he’s trying to tell you to use those blessings to help others.

In the meantime, my wife had taken the three younger kids to a nearby park that has wonderful hills that lend themselves well to tubing. While I was working in the neighborhood, the storm broke and stuff started melting. My wife returned home and asked me to go to the park. I spent some time tubing with the kids before bringing them home tired and happy.

By then the high schoolers were home, so I enlisted their help to clear out the ends of driveways, since the plow had come by. Then we drove to my Mom’s home to work on clearing her driveway. After we did that, Mom mentioned that her neighbor doesn’t get home until after 6:00 PM and that her driveway could be cleared, so we did that as well.

After arriving home and finally stripping off my wet outerwear, I realized that I was kind of beat after having spent more than five hours working and playing in the snow. Coupling that with the good feeling from having helped others today leaves me like my kids: tired but happy.

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