At tonight’s Christmas program at Hope Village, it was abundantly clear that perfection is in the purpose, not in the actions.
Hope Village is a nonprofit group home for special needs adults. At their annual Christmas event for the community, the residents—called “Villagers”—put on a show that warms the heart, brings smiles and laughter, and reminds everyone about Christmas, particularly about sharing. The event does not come off perfectly, as you can imagine, in terms of the actions, but the purpose is perfect indeed. None of the Villagers or the staff or the volunteers became flustered. Everyone used their gifts, which was the greatest gift of all.
Steve Prefontaine, the legendary runner from the 1970s, was a quotable man. Among his many: “To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift.” Though he won many races, he never suggested that giving one’s best required winning or perfection; it was about giving the best with the gifts you have been given. It was the process of doing the best with what one has, not the actions’ final outcomes. The Villagers reminded the audience tonight of what that really means.
Some sang, some danced, some merely stood in their roles at the appropriate place on the stage. All smiled, all had fun, all appreciated the applause and all glowed in the feeling of a well-deserved standing ovation. Each gave of their abilities to create a wonderful event of sharing and caring. And though all the actions were not perfect, the purpose truly was. Life should be that way.
PS: Hope Village has been around for more than four decades, doing an amazing job efficiently and effectively. They just completed an important capital campaign, but if you are looking for a place to make a special gift this Christmas, may I suggest Hope Village?