What was the last noble thing you did?
Noble is a big word, there. One could easily argue the case that I have yet to have a noble moment in my life… I did help a Hispanic lady fill out her passport application at the post office the other day. I chalked that up as my good deed of the day (er…week) – and it was nice of me. But noble? Not quite.
Merriam & Webster define noble as:
a : possessing very high or excellent qualities or properties <noble wine> b : very good or excellent
So just doing something kind of nice, seems to fall a bit short of the mark. I always try to do something good, when a situation presents itself, particularly amongst friends and family, and who knows, I may have even saved a life or two, but it is hard to say how a situation might have panned out on it’s own, in the long run…
With the Christmas season at hand, I find myself returning to the notion presented in It’s a Wonderful Life, with the great, late Jimmy Stewart. I think it would be pretty cool to take a look at one’s surroundings, had one not been there to assist. But without this flight of fancy, and an intervening angel or two, it simply cannot be done.
I think I have done a fair amount of good for the household in which I now live, just by taking over the bill payments, so we have an uninterrupted power supply and internet access. I also feel that I did a decent service at my last job, by setting up the kitchen and juice bar, and making them both operable and welcoming to staff and employees. Before that, there was the Diner, which I still feel as though I took a bit of a fall for, and who knows what might have happened there, were it not for my efforts.
But as I said, it is impossible to say whether you saved the day, or if things might have worked themselves out in the end. Perhaps I have only been causing problems all along!
So I guess, in the end, the most noble route is to keep doing your best, even when it does seem futile, or pointless. Simply try to help, with your best intentions.
Possibly, the nobility of an act lies within the unknowing. The willingness to go out on a limb, or even just to spare a minute, for your most beloved child, or for a total stranger – not knowing if you are changing anyone’s fate, or even their next fifteen minutes. But just by putting yourself out there, in the hopes of a better tomorrow.
It may very well be that the nobility of a life lies within the sheer sense of perseverance.