Helping a stranger

Published 7:10 pm Wednesday, September 26, 2018

It has been said that no greater love has a man than to lay down his life for his friends. While self-sacrifice of such a magnitude is certainly a noble and powerful thing, perhaps one example of love comes in at a close second — giving of one’s self to help a stranger in need.

As volunteers from Beaufort County and beyond poured into Belhaven to assist with distribution of food and supplies yesterday, they came from various places and distances. Among those lending a hand were people from Greenville, Grimesland, Washington, Chocowinity and Belhaven, just to name a few.

Each of these volunteers made the trek to Belhaven, for no other reason than to help those in need. As they loaded cars and trucks with supplies donated by Feed the Children, they spoke to each driver, asking their needs and filling them accordingly.

While some might have known the people they served from the community, by and large, the people they assisted were strangers.

Why would a person take the time out of their day to go and work in the heat, lifting heavy boxes for those in need? What could motivate a person to help someone they have never met before?

The answer is simple, yet incredible.

Each of these volunteers, no matter where they came from or who they are, was driven in some way by the power of human compassion — a sense of care and empathy for the needs of others.

In a society that is so often driven by greed, materialism and self-centeredness, this is a tremendously powerful thing. To show concern for the needs of those around us, whether a friend or a stranger, is to make the world a better place.

Some of those who came to the distribution on Wednesday may well be facing some of the most difficult challenges of their lives — destroyed homes, lost possessions, and other losses beyond value.

While the supplies each family received will last them through the week, whether they realize it or not, their lives were touched yesterday by pure, unadulterated goodness and love from their neighbors, something that will remain in the hearts of men and women throughout the ages.

If that doesn’t show humanity’s good side, we’re not sure what will.