Who Wants to Be a Volunteer?

IMG_5043When you ask that question to a group of adults, the crickets start chirping and everyone in the audience tries especially hard not to make eye contact with the person asking the question.

Ask that same question to a group of children and just about every hand shoots up immediately.

That’s one reason why I love doing shows for kids. They love to help and they love to volunteer. As for adults, at some point in our teenage years, most of us lose the sense of wonder in wanting to help out with anything and everything. By the time we are adults, we just want to sit and watch other people do things.

For example, my daughter is now four. She has been coming to my juggling shows whenever she has a chance to. And every time I call for volunteers for a trick, she waves her hands with all the other kids. It melts my heart because I would love to use her, but of course I don’t want to show favoritism to anyone when I pick volunteers.

So the perfect opportunity came when I did a show for my grandmother’s 80th birthday party. It was mostly family and friends, so it was an appropriate time to let Kezzie be my helper. She did great! She handed me the clubs and volleyball for the trick where I balance a basket/pole on my face and toss the ball in it (and then juggle the clubs). She was thrilled to be my helper. And I had a great time with her on stage as well.

Maybe that will be the first of many times where Kezzie can be my assistant in my show. I never want to force her to do anything. But I will certainly give her the choice to assist me in more official ways in my future shows. So far, she seems to be quite the performer and has no trouble being in front of people.

So let me challenge you to observe the eagerness to help found in the children around you in your life. Don’t be afraid to approach your daily life like a child and find wonder in helping and participating in new and exciting things.

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Dr. Jesse Joyner travels nationwide as a speaker and entertainer. His primary role is that of a performing juggler spreading joy and the love of learning to family and kids events. H earned his PhD in Educational Studies at Trinity International University (Deerfield, IL). He enjoys playing the piano, bird watching, and old houses. He lives in Richmond, VA with his wife, Sarah, and their three kids - the perfect number for juggling children.