Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Note to Self

“Nevertheless, all of us working in development must remember that our job is not to become heroes, but to make heroes out of the people with whom we are working.  Some gratitude will always be forthcoming, but when things are as they should be, the people will mainly be thanking each other.”
--Two Ears of Corn: A Guide to People-Centered Agricultural Improvement by Roland Bunch

I like this quote. I strive to remember it in my work. I try to get out of the way, and help the people I work with direct their own development. However, you can't empower someone who isn't interested in what you have to offer.    

It's all in the balance. Try to instill enthusiasm, but be careful to choose your audience well.  

In the five months I've been here, I've seen little interest or motivation from the women who invited me here to begin with. Maybe that will change, and if it does I'll be thrilled to spend more time with them.  In the meantime...   

I think it's time I find a new audience.  


  1. Honey, if no one else raises his hand, I'll be your audience!

  2. The Roland Bunch quote reminds me of the old adage about "teach a man to fish...", but on a whole deeper level. This kind of empowerment runs through all good spiritually-grounded service work. Maybe those who invited you have not experienced that kind of service (or your kind of servant) and so do not know (or dare) to expect the best. Can you just show up?

  3. Thanks for the support, both of you. I do indeed "just show up" whenever possible, although there are not many actual events, so sometimes that means I just drop by people's houses unannounced and hope for the best.

  4. Do you feel them coming from west of Portland? Intense (fists clenched, squinting) prayers for a major breakthrough.