As a child, one of the first things we learn is to share. At home if you have a brother or sister, your parents are always saying, “Let them play with your toys, you need to know how to share your things.” Then in daycare or school, the same thing happens, the teachers say; “let your friends play with this toy now, go and play with something else!” And so it goes: when we are teenagers our brothers or sisters want to borrow our clothes; they want us to share our stuff- without complaining, of course. When we reach adult life, our family and friends expect us to share everything, like our car, motorbike, computer and other things. We learned a lot about sharing from our childhood. However, do we really know the meaning of sharing?
A few years ago, I had an experience which helped me to understand the real meaning of the word ‘share’. I was with a church group in a small city doing volunteer work where we spent three days. We stayed in a school, where we had our meals and we were preparing for our volunteer work, offering things like haircuts, heath checkups, food, and other things. As it was winter, we also went out to the streets to deliver hot meals to those who had no home. We had to get to know some people who were on the street, and some of them were there because of drugs, alcohol and prostitution. Among these people, we found a woman who had no coat, and I can tell you that it was almost midnight and it was very cold! I ended up giving her my coat, moved by her situation. I really loved that coat! However, I will not lie, it took me a while to give her my coat and to understand the whole situation. I was struggling to be separated from a piece of cloth, my coat! How stupid it was! It took me a while to think that I had another coat back home. It took me a while to understand that sharing does not mean to give only what has been left over, or what we are not using anymore, but sharing means to give what we have for ourselves as well. If we wait to give only our spare time to people who really need our help we never will. If we wait to win the lottery to help our community or other people around us, this will end up being only a desire! I hope that we can learn to share everything we have, really everything, not only the left over stuff. I hope that we all can share our best!