A few weeks ago I was talking with a mom when we were interrupted by a volunteer who had a question.

I love the spontaneity that occurs in the day-to-day life of community – how you learn little gems about our moms when you least expect it.

The volunteer, who serves regularly in our homes, mentioned that she would be bringing a meal over in the next few days.

“We’re thankful for anything you can do,” the mom responded back in all sincerity. “Thank you for everything you do for us.”

Our work is often described as a bridge between the poor and the rich, an offering opportunity for true solidarity. The interaction I saw moved the give-and-take expectation of volunteerism (I give to you for nothing in return) to give-and-give (we both give, we both receive).

In this quick moment, I am thankful for witnessing this expression of candid gratitude from the mom, a true gift to our volunteer.  A sense of entitlement?  There was none here, only humble respect and appreciation.