“But the noble make noble plans, and by noble deeds they stand.” – Isaiah 32:8
A tornado touched down in a somewhat upscale neighborhood this past week, one of many episodes of violent weather that occurred across much of our nation. In this instance, while thankfully no one was injured, there was still considerable property damage due to fallen trees, blown down fences, broken windows, and serious roof destruction leading to water damage inside the homes. The neighborhood was a mess.
The film footage of the aftermath reported by local television stations not only revealed the extent of the damage, but in the background you could see scads of people busy cleaning up debris, boarding up broken windows, and climbing on rooftops to make temporary repairs as best they could. Alas! – these were not professional disaster responders, just regular folks, neighbors helping neighbors.
A few weeks ago, an elderly neighbor fell in her driveway while going to get the mail and was unable to get up. Seeing her predicament, we rushed out the front door to assist her. Thankfully, except for a few scratches, she was not seriously hurt, and we were able to help her up and return safely back inside her home. Neighbors helping neighbors, of which we have more often been the grateful recipients than the helpers.
Such noble acts of kindness and generosity involve no fanfare; it is simply what neighbors do for each other; what caring people do. And there are lots of kind, generous, caring people around – more than we can imagine.
In her poem Nobility nineteenth century American poet Alice Cary penned these beautiful words: “True worth is in being, not seeming / In doing, each day that goes by / Some little good – not in dreaming / Of great things to do by and by. / For whatever men say in their blindness, / And spite of the fancies of youth, / There’s nothing so kingly as kindness, / And nothing so royal as truth.”
“But the noble make noble plans, and by noble deeds they stand.” Or as Mother Teresa once said, “We cannot do great things on this earth, only small things with great love.” Neighbors helping neighbors, how noble is that!