Years ago, Dr. James Dobson told a story about his wife, Shirley, leaving their two year old son, Ryan, with him for the morning. Like most two year olds, Ryan was busy and noisy. After a few minutes of silence, Dr. Dobson got worried and began looking around the house. He knew when little boys get quiet, they are usually up to something. When he couldn't find Ryan, he began to panic until he looked out the window and saw Ryan in the back of a worker's pick up truck.

Ryan had somehow managed to crawl into the bed of the truck, then began trying to get out of it. While lying on his belly face down, he was hanging his feet over the edge of the truck gate reaching for the ground. By the time his father got to him, his legs were reaching for the ground some fifteen inches below and he was quietly saying, "Help the boy. Would someone please help the boy?"

There are times when we all feel like we need a little help. We know exactly how little Ryan felt and we are not sure if anyone is listening. You may be feeling that way now. I know a lot of folks are.

You see, right now I have friends from church who are in Japan, Tuscaloosa, and know folks going to Joplin. They're not there for sightseeing or taking vacation — although most are using their vacation time. Others in my circle of friends are headed to an orphanage in Peru, going to Africa to work among those in the most desperate of circumstances, and too many other places to even name.

"Would someone please help the boy?"

Jesus talked about helping those in need and spent a lot more time demonstrating that help. So I want to remind all of us to take a little time and notice ... notice the folks who are struggling ... who are discouraged ... and especially those who are trying to rebuild their lives from disasters — whether personal or natural disasters. And they need someone to walk with them.

So let's take time this summer to help and make a difference in the lives of others in the name of Jesus.

Here's a couple of things to think about to get you started, but I'm sure you can come up with some of your own; and I'd love for you to share them in the comments section!

  • Become a big brother or sister with Big Brothers and Big Sisters (
  • Send a donation ( in honor of your dad, granddad, or some other important man in your life to a children's home or adoption agency — here's one of my favorites, Christian Homes and Family Services.
  • Fill in with Meals on Wheels ( during the summer when they are needing volunteers as is Habitat for Humanity (
  • I bet you have some good ideas, too.
  • Go on a mission or service trip with your church or youth group to help those with huge needs.
  • Volunteer to help with relief, cleanup, and rebuilding efforts in one of the many places that have been devastated by fire, tornadoes, tsunamis, or other disasters.
  • Clean out your closets with good clothes you don't wear and donate them to Goodwill.
  • Buy some clean white socks and bottle water to give to folks who are homeless on the streets.

I bet you have some good ideas, too. I'd love to hear from you in the comments below.

Oh, and one more thing. I've bought one of these cool shirts to help some friends raise money for their work in Japan — they are there now. Why not take a look and see if you might see if you want one, too! Hope for Japan in the name of Jesus with relief efforts emanating out of Ibaraki Christian College led by Crash and Global Samaritan Resources (!

No matter what, take some time to be a blessing!