The purpose of life is not to be happy – but to matter, to be productive, to be useful, to have it make some difference that you have lived at all. ~Leo Rosten
We have all searched for our own purpose in life at one time or another. Perhaps Leo Rosten is right; happiness isn’t it. Hopefully, we do all manage to achieve a healthy level of joy in our lives! However, in the seemingly constant push for its pursuit, we must not forsake the importance, or the simplicity, of our ability to “matter,” as Rosten says, or to make a difference in this life. Some of the best bedtime stories we read to our children serve not only to spark their imagination, but to nurture ours. They often remind us of how precious and unique every living thing is in its singularity. No one of us is the same! How, then, can a difference not be made in our determination to make it? The difference we make, like happiness, is relative, of course. But surely a particular honor must be saved for the soul who attempts to make a difference in the life of a child.
This week’s story highlights an artist who has truly made his life useful. He makes a difference by teaching and counseling children of all ages. We were moved by his efforts and thought you would be too!
I started airbrushing in 1989. I assisted numerous kids with their senior projects and saw how my talking to them inspired them. This prompted me to become more involved with children and youth. One student I taught lived in a town where a lot of his friends were getting into drugs and gangs. His next door neighbor saw his potential and drove him over an hour every weekend so that I could teach him airbrushing. I started teaching him when he was 15 years old; he now attends a 4 year college, is head of his track team and majors in graphic design and visual arts. Today, I enjoy volunteering as an art therapist at my local hospital helping kids with all types of serious illnesses. I love to just to bring smiles to their faces and to help take their mind off what they are going through if just for a moment. I love art and will always share my love with any heart that is willing to be open to receive my efforts. – Terrence Moore
Terrence Moore is a mixed media artist who was born and raised in Greenville, North Carolina. He has been using his talents to encourage and motivate children and teenagers for years. I can only imagine the number of lives that have been changed thanks to your efforts, Terrence. Nothing can be more rewarding than witnessing the joy and success of children that you have mentored. We commend you and thank you for your dedication to improving the world, one child at a time. We encourage the Imagekind community to check out Terrence’s work!
I imagine that every artist could attribute his/her success and motivation to at least one influential person in his/her life. We can probably all recall a defining moment when we realized the limitlessness of our potential, at least in partial thanks to someone who took the time to echo a little encouragement in our ear from time to time. Just the sheer act of placing our art on a website for the world to admire is proof of our determination to ensure that the lens with which we see the world is shared. In this seemingly simple act, we add purpose to our lives and to the lives of others! We can never know how the viewing of our particular style of art will inspire a change in mood, thought, overall attitude or outlook on life. Isn’t it incredible to imagine the impact that we can have on someone’s life?
How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.
We are thoroughly enjoying your stories. Please continue to share them! Be sure to include a few specific details for us so we can be sure to highlight your efforts in the best way possible! If you would like to contribute a story to the Imagekind for Humankind series, please do so here.