Do you remember Barney’s love song?

I love you, you love me
We’re a happy family…
Barney’s song lingered in my mind as I was enjoying a leisurely drive through Jamaica’s countryside and thinking to myself, what a wonderful world it would be if only we could all live as one big happy family!

When suddenly, the surrounding scenic serenity was shattered by the sound of a woman’s  shouts  – “Help!  Don’t kill me!  Help!”

Along with other motorists, we had stopped at a rail-road crossing, waiting for the train to pass – a train that never came. Scared motorists, rolled up their windows and locked down their doors.

That is… all except one brave man, who some later called a fool. He clutched his 9 millimeter Glock, opened the door of his chauffeur driven car, and cautiously walked towards the shouts for help.   That fool was me.

Seconds later, I heard what could have been the fatal “SHOT”   [Gunshot]  Oh No…… was I too late?

But, wait! I felt a burning sensation in the back of my thigh… It was I who had been ambushed and shot. Instantly I raised my gun in self-defense, but, but, there was no target in sight, none in front, none to my left, none to my right…

But as I slowly slumped to the ground, I looked behind me… and there he was. Tall, well-dressed, with a military cut and militant strides he was moving in on me… fast. Helpless on the ground, what could I do about the man that I could see… even if I were, Rambo, or Bruce Lee?

But because I was only, Godfrey, and pleading for mercy, I did the one thing that Rambo would never have done – I laid my gun down –  and in a futile appeal to the bravery of the cowards cowering in the comfort of their closed cars, I cried… “Help!”

As I lay bleeding on the ground, with dexterity and skill, the gun man moved in for the kill… retrieved my gun, then pointed his gun one inch from my head.

God kept my head and hand moving… head and hand… hand and head. The gunman tried to follow the moving target. Then, at point blank range, he fired what he meant to have been the final, fatal, “SHOT”.   [Gunshot] 

Don’t cry!  On that day, I did not die.  The bullet hit my hand, but God hid my head!

] Contest Master, Fellow Toastmasters, Dignitaries and guests… Was I wrong to risk my life in response to that stranger’s cry for help? Hmm!  And what would you have done?

These are both working whistles. Listen!

{Blow each of them}

The first you heard. The second, your dog could hear, but you did not, because your ears are not attuned to that frequency.

Cries for help from the helpless come in different frequencies. “Help… I need food to eat… clothes to wear… a shelter over my head… Help! I need to find my voice… someone to listen to me… someone to love me… Help!”

Some cries we hear, but choose to ignore. Others we don’t want to hear, so we tune out their frequency. But you and I know  how fulfilled and free we feel when we hear that cry for help, and without regard to personal cost, we reach out a helping hand to help lift our fellow, fallen, man.

The following day, as I lay in my hospital bed, a stranger came to visit me. Holding a bouquet of flowers in one hand, and a young child in the other, with tears in her eyes, Veronica introduced herself.

“I am the woman whose life you saved. When you took the bullet that was meant for me, the robbers panicked, and drove away”. She laid the flowers beside me, introduced her son to me, leaned over and hugged me, and whispered… “Thank you”!

You may never have to risk your life to help a stranger. But helping others always costs. It might be your time, your money, or more! When you are called upon to help… will you be willing to make that sacrifice?

But rest assured, whether at home, at work, at school, at church or wherever you may be, helping others become the best that they can be, always carries the highest  “Return On Investment”, guarantee. It’s the ultimate fulfilment of your destiny.

God has made you like He has made no one else. Why? So that you can help others, like no one else can.

Mahalia Jackson said it best…

“If I can help somebody … in a word or song… as I travel along…  Then my living shall not be in vain”

Then perhaps… just perhaps… together we can help make Barney’s dream come true…

I love you… you love me… We’re a happy family…

Please…  whoever you can help… however you can help… whenever you can help… just, Help!