By Patricia McKinney
Caring is an act of love that's displayed in many forms, and it's always felt and remembered by the person receiving it. People never forgot those that cared about them. Especially in this dog-eat-dog world that we live in. Unfortunately, people have become more "Me" centered instead of "We" centered, meaning they've lost sight of having the slightest bit of concern for others, and a "broader sense of community". They've forgotten that when you care for others, someone will care for you in your own time of need.
To care means that you take interest in something or someone by being a contributor to meet a need. It means to display warmth or affection, and show concern and empathy for others. It doesn't always come in the form of money, but also in your time, support, a listening ear, and prayer for another's well being. One thing I've learned in my line of work, is that people are "pro's" at hiding what they feel inside or they've learned to live life with pain, shame, rejection, and guilt and they'll use various outlets to suppress it. (drugs, alcohol, staying in unhealthy relationships etc.) They choose to sweep their inner issues under a rug in order to save their self from any unwanted embarrassment, until someone comes along with genuine concern that makes them feel safe enough to express it.
I believe that caring for others was given to human beings as a responsibility from God. Of course you'll encounter those that won't appreciate what you have to offer, and you'll even get "burned at times" by those that take you for granted. But I've learned that it teaches you wisdom with safe boundaries so you'll know your limits. I know what it's like first hand to care for someone, and experience a lack of appreciation for it, but I've always reaped the good from what I've sown. God will never let your work go unnoticed and He'll reward you for the love that you've shown to others openly.