She wrote to thank one of our students. She doesn’t know who he is. He wears his uniform with pride and each morning, as he walks from the railway station to the School, he has his eyes open, not fixated on his device.
This young man is looking for litter. He has made a silent commitment to ensure the path he walks is free from rubbish. He doesn’t have to do this. He wasn’t asked, he just silently goes about picking up other people’s rubbish so everyone else walking that way can enjoy a clean environment.
What this young man has chosen to do is very small in the scheme of things, but it is having a big impact. While I am sure he doesn’t do it for recognition, that isn’t his motivation, others have noticed. His small act, carried out with humility, is providing a wonderful example to others. He is truly servant hearted and, as such, is making a difference to others.
At this week’s Chapel service, three students shared their experience of serving others. They had attended this year’s Vanuatu Outreach trip. Six months of preparation culminated in two and a half weeks of service to the children of three small communities on the island of Santo. Their act of service made a difference to the children in Vanuatu, but it had a bigger impact on the students who went. They had their eyes opened to the true value and worth of a person, a hint of what real joy looks like, and how fulfilling a genuine sense of purpose can have.
Part of our purpose as a School is to prepare students who… have a heart for servant leadership. The reason we have this as a key focus is because education is far more than a grade or entrance mark for university; it is about preparing young people to lead and live lives of flourishing – to seek ways in which they can make a difference to others.
My thanks to that young man who, in his own small way, is having a profound impact on those who have seen him.
Dr Paul Browning