Playing Our Part

What Can I Do?

Some can change the world,

some can redirect nations,

some can help a friend.

Yesterday we celebrated the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the civil rights leader who changed the course of U.S. history in his fight for racial equality and justice. His efforts affected not just the United States, but the world. Dr. King aimed to achieve his goals through non-violent means, and for this he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

Not all of us are gifted with the talents and drive of Dr. King to bring about sweeping nationwide or worldwide change, but each of us can make a difference for the better within our capacity and means. LeBron James, NBA legend and a native of Akron, Ohio has not forgotten or given up on his hometown. James, who was raised in poverty by a single mother, is dedicated to making life better for disadvantaged children in Akron. He has provided secure, stable housing, and superior educational opportunities and resources up to the college level for those who otherwise may never have had the chance to achieve such goals.

Although we may lack the fiery personality of Dr. King or the resources of LeBron James, that does not mean that we do not have the capacity to make life better for many. Residents of nursing facilities or hospices always welcome a bit of cheer. Visitation may be restricted at this time but sending greeting cards is one way of sharing joy. A donation to the local foodbank or animal shelter will help with food and care for many. Closer to home, being a good neighbor, especially if your neighbors are elderly, will bring a sense of security and connection to someone who may be desperate for it.

Whatever we do, however little it might seem, would go a long way to forge connections and unite us to each other, especially if our actions generate a chain reaction.