Name: Kaleigh Smith
From: Mendon, Utah
All of us recognize that service is important and that it helps society
progress, but do any of us actually participate, learn, and apply
principles gleaned from completing acts of service? I know I have.
Areas I’ve chosen to serve are in my church, community, and high
school, specifically in leading and helping individuals.
I have held and served in leadership and student governmental
positions, directed school classes and meetings, headed groups during
nation-wide competitions, ran a campaign for Student Body President
(and earned role of Student Body Vice President), assisted students
in schoolwork, aided the elderly in my neighborhood, processed books
at the library, supported efforts in third world countries or
recently damaged cities through humanitarian aid kits, and shown love
and kindness to my fellow man, in total serving around 5-11 hours per
week, depending on the time of year.
Through my experiences, I have
learned several important principles of service and story. I
recognize the reason why service is so fulfilling and important—we
are building and creating better stories. A huge challenge all human
beings face is that we all are born into circumstances that,
essentially, are completely random. Maybe fate or God put us there
purposefully, but the point is we can’t control who our ancestors
are, where we were born, and what kind of social stigmas we have to
trudge through. But what we can do is control our actions and
ourselves. I try my best to prove social stigmas wrong and show the
world I am not just a youth, but a huge influence and inspiration of
goodness, virtue, honesty, and joy, and this enables me to help and
inspire others. But, people normally can’t do it by themselves.
There first have to be kind and serving people in positions of
success and growth who aid those who are less fortunate.
By helping others less fortunate
to start writing a better story, we are sparking a huge chain of
love, service, and brotherly kindness that will explode and fill the
world with charitable hearts and forgiving minds. This is
“forward-looking” for me. Right now service may seem small and
insignificant, but in twenty or thirty years these acts of kindness
will impact people in ways you could never have imagined. It may not
be like in the movies where you are granted fame or fortune—but
maybe you see more smiles around town, maybe there is an increase in
happiness, peace, or cooperation at schools, businesses, or homes.
You never know. That is why I commit to serving and loving others
because it will have a profound effect on who I am, who others will
become, and how society works as a whole. I know that I am writing
the best story for myself, and helping others to do the same with
theirs. Because—as one of my favorite fictional characters says—in
the end we’re all stories, but we can certainly make sure they are