A reader had perfect timing as he wrote in and asked, “I know I need to perform good works, but how do I know what I am supposed to do? How do I begin?” My response is: think small at first. When it was time for me to get ready for two a days I didn’t go out and run five miles. I put on the cleats the coaches sent me every July and on the first day I basically walked around in them, jogged up and down the field once or twice. But each day the workout got more intense. By the time practice started for real, I was ready. (Or thought I was.)
Write a note to a friend who is struggling, make a call to family member you haven’t heard from in a while, read a book to a child are all “baby steps.” (Stolen phrase from one of Suzy’s favorite movies, What About Bob?). Soon, reaching out to someone, helping someone, or simply being a presence for someone will become part of your daily ritual. You don’t have to cure Ebola or go on a mission to Africa to serve your brothers and sisters. I also promise you that if you develop a routine and attitude of serving others in whatever small way, God will guide you. Each of us is like a raw athlete who is willing to be coached and learn. If we practice every day, if we give it our best, ultimately the coaches will find the position you are meant to play. Not all of us can be quarterbacks. Lineman play just as important a part if the team is going to be successful. (Forgive my plug for linemen.).
If you can’t get into sports analogies, the author offers two more. Every good action is like the blows of a chisel by a gifted sculptor. Each cuts away a piece of stone essential to shape the ideal form. He also reminds us that it is “the small daily brush strokes that create the painting, no matter how large the canvas.”
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