Happy Elevated Friday! Today we highlight a story of generosity and consideration of others interests instead of our own. In Ohio, Shawn Beveridge is a crane operator and recently his team started a new project across the street from a nursing home. From day one, Shawn noticed that an elderly gentleman in a wheelchair would come out in the morning as soon as they arrived and stay until they packed up for the night. He even ate his lunch at the same time as them! After a couple days of this, Shawn introduced himself to the man. The man’s name is Harold and he explained that for 50 years he was a crane operator until health issues landed him in hospice care in 2012. The reason he came out each day to watch them was because he loved what he did and never thought he’d get to see a crane in action again. Thinking quickly and of Harold’s interests instead of his own, Shawn made him a deal. Shawn wrote on Facebook, “Our deal is this: Harold ran cranes for over 50 years and no matter how good you think you are at something, there’s always more to learn. So I told Harold every day after work, I’ll sit with him for a little bit so he can critique me and judge me on how I did for that day (give him something to talk about that he enjoys) while I also get to learn from him. In return, I would bring him a black coffee every morning for as long as I’m here and buy him lunch twice a week from wherever he chooses.” Harold exuberantly accepted and they have been “working” together ever since. Of the entire situation Shawn said, “Always try to enlighten someone’s spirits. When God chooses to take this man home, I’m happy knowing that I’ve been placed here at this location to make his days better. I’m happy with that.”
In today’s world, there are so many people who struggle daily to find things to laugh or even smile about. Stress and depression steal joy from our lives and we seek all the wrong places to find relief. The Bible tells us, “Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” This is a prescription for far more than just creating peace on earth – it is also a prescription for finding joy. Joy comes from creating positive relationships that forge a sense of brotherhood/sisterhood. Said more simply, if we seek to make others smile, we cannot help but smile ourselves. Today, seek to make someone else smile and see that it will make a far more lasting impression on both of you than anything else you may try to find joy.
“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” – Philippians 2:4 ESV