Have you ever felt like you are doing all that you can to make a difference in the world and yet no one cares? You do not believe that you will change the whole world but you do want to positively impact your corner of it.  You unselfishly give your time and any resources available to include others in your cause only to be met with apathy and indifference.  You are left to step back and wonder how something that stirs up such passion in you can fall flat with those that should care the most.

I was recently talking with a friend who is experiencing this.  He is doing all that he can to garner support for an amazing and important cause while being ignored by those that have the most to offer.  As we were talking I began to think about my own experience.  So often I feel like I am pouring all that I have into communicating a message that could change lives if only that message were received.  So often it seems like I am more interested in the solutions to the problems in the lives of others than they are themselves.

If you have ever tried to communicate an important message or promote an important cause, you know this feeling.  And it makes you want to quit.  If what you are doing is so important though, you can’t quit.

So what do you do when you feel like no one cares?

1. Take some time to reflect on why you got involved in this cause.  Did you get involved for recognition and admiration or because you could not imagine walking away without doing something.  If the answer is the former, you need to quit.  If it is the latter, then you cannot quit.

2. Instead of focusing on those that don’t care, focus on those that do.  Generally the problem is not that no one cares but that they don’t care in the numbers or as enthusiastically as we would like. Don’t invest your time, energy, and resources trying to move the unmovable. Instead, find those that will get involved or be helped and invest in them.  They are depending on you to know the difference.

3. Work to understand those that you feel don’t care. Often people are dealing with so much in their own lives that your cause is just one more thing that they don’t have the energy or time to deal with.  We live in a world full of overwhelmed people.  Instead of feeling angry and personally rejected by their lack of concern, see if there is some burden they are carrying that you can help with.

4. Find encouragement from those that do “Get it.” So often we feel alone as we champion our cause and become discouraged at the thought of continuing on by ourselves.  Find others who are involved in the same cause or one similar and share the success as well as the defeats with those that can relate. Try to be encouraging as you receive encouragement and you may just find the boost you need.

5. Honestly evaluate the way that you communicate your passion to others. This one is difficult and may require a trusted friend or mentor in order to be helpful.  When we are in the middle of something that moves us to action, it is easy to forget that others may not be moved in the same way. Perhaps a perceived lack of concern is nothing more than a lack of understanding.  Evaluate the WAY that you communicate and the WHAT may be more readily received.

These are just five simple thoughts and I am sure there are many more.  What would you tell someone who feels like their message is just not being received?

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Jeremy Stalnecker is the Executive Director of the Mighty Oaks Foundation which is dedicated to helping America’s military warriors and their families who are suffering from the unseen wounds of combat. While growing up Jeremy’s only goal was to leave home and join the Marine Corps. This dream was finally realized with an active duty commission in 1999 which opened the door to serve as a Marine Infantry Officer during the opening days of the war in Iraq. One month after returning from Iraq, Jeremy entered full-time ministry and eventually accepted a senior pastor role. He later accepted a full-time position with the Mighty Oaks Foundation which brought together his ministry and military experience in a way that allows him to minister to hurting veterans, service members and their families. Along with his wife and their four children, Jeremy works to reach the hurting and provide healing found in Christ.

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