4 Easy Ways to Change the World (with your kids) This Month

flower gardenOkay, I admit it. That title promises a lot! But think of it like this:

I once heard someone talk about how people think they need to make a big contribution to the world (a “legacy”) in some huge dramatic gesture. Something so head-turning and philanthropic that you get your name on a plaque or name mentioned in a book. Imagine this good deed as a $100 bill and we spend it all at once.

Maybe. Sometimes.

But the way this person (Fred Craddock) described it, he said life was more like spending that $100 in dimes and quarters. A “small” act of kindness here, and a word of hope there. Small change to change the world.

Here are 4 things you can do (that are also kid-friendly) to change the world this month.

1. Clean
You know that nearby pathway or street that’s covered in garbage? Grab some work gloves and a garbage bag and enjoy a 1/2 hour cleaning God’s planet. I did this with one of mine the other day and we had a blast. A neighbourhood kid even came by on his bike: “Watcha doin’?” Next thing we knew, we had a helper!

2. Feed
You’re getting ready for an outing. You’re making sandwiches and grabbing some apples. Why not make an extra lunch and take it to someone downtown who needs a bit of help? It’s not a huge deal to you but it’s a day-changer for someone else.

3. Unplug
Maybe by yourself or with your partner or family, turn off all screens for the day. Laze around, wear pajamas, play scrabble (or Hungry Hippos). Tarry in the space and sanctity of life. Concerning the Sabbath, Hebrew language scholar Robert Alter translates Exodus 31:17 as “He ceased and caught His breath.”

4. Thank You
I’m guessing that someone has touched your life in the past month. Express your gratitude. Call them up, or maybe even send a card the “old” way (How much are stamps, anyway?) We are given gifts every single day.

I haven’t said anything revolutionary.

But we can sometimes get stalled in thinking that we always need to do some “big” thing for a contribution to be worthwhile, to leave our mark.

But the mark is you. You’re Someone’s fingerprint. A dime here, a quarter there.  As Ace Collins says, “Love is the one commodity we can possess that is replenished and increased when it is given away.”

Good job. You just changed the world.


  1. Good food, Matthew! As Mother Teresa said, “You can do no great thing; you can only do small things with great love.”


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