Last week I attended the 25th Annual Benefit Concert for the Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. The co-sponsor was New Albany-Plain Local Schools. Throughout the evening I watched The First Turning in action.
The theme of the event was “Playing from the Heart.” Musical selections in the form of vocals and strings transformed the world that night, using lyricism to show the audience how compassion and philanthropy can be daily acts, and how they can influence our future.
The evening reminded me of words spoken by Mahatma Gandhi. He once said, “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change toward him. … We need not wait to see what others do.” Though Gandhi is more often attributed with a simpler statement—“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”—I love the depth in the quote above… the idea that even something so small as a tendency can spur a seismic shift in the world’s attitude, and the simple encouragement in his suggestion that we act for change regardless of what others are doing around us.
Though at this particular event, it must be said that it was precisely what others around me were doing that connected me to the hope and desire for change—the very feelings that inspired me to write my book. I was amazed at the impact of the committed organizations sponsoring the event and the inspiring individuals who were honored there. I feel so privileged to have shared an evening with people who are actively changing the future of our children—children who at one time would have faced sure fatality but who are now able to survive and even thrive. I was so completely moved by the outpouring of love and commitment I saw and I will forever carry the melodies of the evening with me.
When I found my way home that night I thought to myself, “There is a movement afoot. Enough good people are doing something. Legs are taking shape and we are making strides.”
While the world rages, while the headlines scream, there are untold numbers of the world’s citizens out there working for a better world. The First Turning.