Capturing Humanity

Quenching our thirst to be a part of something good

I made my daily trek to Facebook this morning to see who had a birthday and to send along my best wishes. And, as I often do, I took a look at some of the posts shared by my friends. Minutes later, tears flowed as I witnessed a bit of humanity watching high school students come together to make Christmas special for a classmate.


All of the facts aren’t apparent from the video. But we know the storyline and want to hear it again and again.

The Story We Love to Hear
An individual has a need. Someone else finds out. Using significant effort, the need is met. While the individual is blessed, the true measure of the story comes from the perspective of the giver and the ways the story changes the lives of those who hear it.

The video showed a great moment when students gathered around a classmate as she opened a gift that she truly needed. That, in and of itself, brought tears to my eyes. But then I noticed something else. As the moment played out, you saw the faces of the givers. Not only were there expressions of joy, but a 21st-century twist.

Almost every person pictured on that video was capturing the moment on their phones.

Not selfies. Not group poses with a classic stance. Instead, the students were recording a special moment of humanity — when doing for others was the focus and they weren’t even in the picture.

I wonder how many times those students have — and will — share those videos. I wonder how many times they will sit in a quiet place and witness that instant when they were part of something wholly good.

We thirst to be part of such a story. In truth, we see it played every day. I am the person in need. You are the person in need.

Merry Christmas!

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