Significance (noun), meaning; sense; quality of having meaning.
Not too long ago, a wise man asked a question, "what is the most important thing in life?" Gosh, there were lots of answers; faith, relationship, love, provision, respect. But I thought his answer was most insightful; it was significance. It kind of took me by surprise, as I had not thought of it quite in that way. I do believe he is right.
When you lay your head on the pillow at the end of the day, what goes through your mind? Are you, like me, thankful for the provisions of the LORD during the day, His protection? Probably. But, on a deeper level, I look back upon the day and think about who I have touched, impacted, loved. Did I make them feel special about themselves or cared about them in a way that they have no doubt of my concern for them? Did I listen? Did I give them significance?
Moreover, in touching someone else, does that give me significance? Do I feel important and needed... I think that is what truly gives us the feeling of significance; when we are needed and wanted. That really gets to the core, doesn't it? The heart of depression, I believe, is a lack of feeling significant. Feeling needed by someone, even one person, can make the different between living and dying, even if only on the inside.
We all long to feel significant to our chosen partner. Lacking that affirmation or confirmation from your husband or wife makes life lonely and sad. I think that so many people feel trapped in relationships that are painful due to this lack of giving significance to one another. It hurts me to think about it, honestly. And, for those that are single, how do they find significance? A strong circle of supportive and loving friends is absolutely required.
Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD. ~Leviticus 19:18
If you are a believing person, here is the command to love your neighbor. Oh yeah, we have all heard this, but I think this encompasses so much more than just making sure you are polite to those around you. We all need to feel loved, significant, to those around us...needed, wanted. Frequently, it is asked 'but, who is my neighbor?' Frankly, I think this is a rather lame question; obviously, those that you deal with daily would be considered your neighbor - let's concentrate on those closest to us first. Those are the ones on whom we have the most impact anyway, right?
Give significance to others. Just do it. Make yourself vulnerable to someone else, tell them you care, make sure they know how important they are and that you would miss them if they were gone. Tell someone they look pretty or especially handsome today, laugh at their jokes, seek them out and make sure they knew you wanted to be with them. Love them, care for them, bear their burdens. It's not hard. And then, do it again tomorrow.
And in doing so, you make yourself significant...to all those around you.