Humans tend to have a difficult time assigning proper value to their talents and skill sets — and rightfully so. We typically battle excess pride and insecurity, consecutively, when faced with the opportunity to share, help or assess our abilities. In Dr. Daniel Stockstill’s Bible class last week, I froze as he spoke these words: “Part of becoming an adult is knowing who you actually are, and what you actually do.” The question of “do” means: What is the real quality of your work and what does your work actually produce in the world around you.
His words provoked uncharted thought within myself. In that moment, I realized that I am not only far from answering those questions about myself, but that process to answer them will be uncomfortable. Nevertheless, knowing the truth about oneself paves the way for a much more fruitful life.
People, as individuals, are not alone in facing the questions. Who are you actually? And what do you actually do?
Institutions such as Harding University, which includes students, staff, administration, donors, board members and every otherworking part, must ask itself these same questions. Harding escapes the entrance into “adulthood,” but it might reach new heights within its realm that parallels the journey of a child who grows up and adopts to new expectations and responsibilities.
Harding University exercises awareness and responsibility toward its community, but do we currently understand the role our community needs us to play in full? Our role could change over night, and Searcy deserves our dedicated attention for when those changes happen — if for no other reason than the amount of physical space we take up. The idea is not for Harding to change, but simply to be for Searcy what Searcy needs.
To be a useful entity in your community is to know the whole truth about what your community needs and expects from you, as well as knowing what you need from a community.
Sustainable good comes from accurate information. Harding University interacts well with its Searcy community, but I wonder if we could do even better? Maintaining your role in a community requires consistent, informed action. Last year, the Small Business Revolution gave Harding a clear cut answer for what Searcy needed from us. What do they need now?
Throughout this year, I will explore who Harding University actually is, and what we actually can do in our surrounding community. And in turn, find what our community can do for us. Living in community is messy and tedious, yet purposeful. Join me this year in learning our place inside this multifaceted community we call home.