Celebrating our connection

by Mark McDonald

When I was a boy, I would spend time each summer with my grandfather, C.T. “Check” King, working in his hardware store. We would drop by the ice house and get ice for his water fountain, which drew people into the store because there weren’t many ice-cold water fountains in Conway. The city was much, much smaller, and many people got their news from the time they took dropping in to drink some water and buy a few supplies.

The 501 has changed tremendously since those days, and we now have four times as many people as we did then. That makes it much harder to keep up with what is going on like people did in King Hardware.

501 LIFE celebrates 100 issues this month, and it represents the way that we continue to seek ways to stay in touch with each other and know what is going on in our lives.

That desire for knowing each other reflects a deeper, inward need for connection. One of the ways that we express this in Christianity is through a simple but profound verse: “Treat people the same way you want them to treat you,” (Luke 6:31).

In this single verse, Jesus tells his followers the secret to a strong community where everyone is connected. If we want to be loved, we love others. If we want to be heard, we listen to others. If we want to be supported, we support others. If we want to have plenty, we give freely!

This principle is called “The Golden Rule,” and some form of it is found in Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Confucianism, Baha’i and many other religions and philosophies of the world. It strikes at the very core of our being, calling us from ourselves into community.

This month, we should celebrate the 100th issue of 501 LIFE because it represents something special about our community. We celebrate that we can stay connected and live by the Golden Rule — both in the 501 and everywhere we go!