Thursday, November 06, 2008

Serving Others

In his acceptance speech Tuesday night, Barack Obama spoke of the "enormity of the task that lies ahead" and acknowledged that he alone cannot solve our problems. He called for "a new spirit of service, a new spirit of sacrifice."

Nobel laureate Muhammed Yunus has been championing the idea of service for the past 34 years. (For some background on Yunus, see my October 25, 2006 posting: "The Importance of Thinking Small.") Yunus speaks about the soul-depleting effects of spending all of our time and energy trying to make money versus the soul-enhancing effects of using some of that human capital to create social businesses that help others. (Encore career anyone?)

In other words, the things that excite us, that give our lives meaning, are often the very things that end up connecting us to the larger community. A win-win for all.


  1. Wow, this is phenomonal!!

  2. Aside from the fact that my favorite politician just used "enormity" wrong (it doesn't mean "huge." It means "awful..." Mmmm. maybe that's just what he meant. Well, then. That my favorite politician just used "enormity" right, I have to say that the reason he always appealed to me is that he is a "server." And smart, too. (-:

    Carolyn Howard-Johnson
    Blogging on editing at

  3. It is the enormity of the challenge that feeds President-Elect Obama's desire to serve. He will succeed because he approaches his new position from an entirely different place than those who came before him. He is capable of separating need from greed.

    We all should incorporate this advice into our daily lives.

  4. Well put, Jozette. Thanks for the vocab lesson, CHJ. (I love language!)