Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Thankful Campaign: Three "Others-First" Values in a "Me-First" World

This is a post by Evelyn Hines, NFI's Executive Assistant for Training and Program Support. Evelyn and her husband of 26 years live in Pittsburgh and have three children. She shares her thoughts today as part of NFI's The Thankful Campaign.

As this holiday season approaches, I want to share what we have planted in our children in order to teach them to be thankful for everything. Although we live in a "me-first" society, it is important to step back and put others first.

We cannot choose our parents. We have taught our children to be thankful to have parents, for many of their friends come from single-parent homes. We cannot choose our children through birth, but as parents we are blessed to be given just the right ones for our family. The perfect match begins in the womb.

An Obligation to Strangers
With the economic condition steadily falling, many folks cannot make it financially. One does not necessarily need money to uplift a stranger’s countenance. We are thankful to share time, a smile, and kind words with someone who will not discuss their empty heart and pauper’s pockets. Furthermore, there is nothing more valuable than visiting people in the hospital during the holiday. That is the last place they want to be.

Give Until It Never Hurts
Throughout these upcoming holidays of having delicious food and expensive gifts, we remember to share with others that may not be as fortunate. It truly is more blessed to give than receive.


  1. Ms. Hines,

    Your points are well-taken and surely form the basis of what is sadly lacking in this world: compassion for those less fortunate than us. As an "older" Dad who experienced the joy of being a first time father at the age of 50, I thank God every day for this blessing.

    My 10 year old has taught me much in his short life, primarily the gift of giving. Time spent with him is invaluable and I have learned so much about myself in the process. In turn, I try to teach him the value of reaching out to others and sharing but, as you said, we live in a "me-first society" so the challenge of getting the message across becomes more arduous in today's world. As parents, we owe it to our children to focus on the intangibles in life so that they are not wholly consumed by the material trappings that surround them.

    Listening to children is probably the most important gift any adult can give because it helps to build their self-esteem when they feel that they are being heard. As parents, it's up to us to set the tone. Start now. Happy Holidays!

  2. Thank you, Evelyn, for being a voice of Truth and Reason to a lost and hurting society...


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