The Cause

“Everyone needs a cause bigger than themselves,” publisher and commencement speaker Pam Siddall recently told university graduates. And it’s true! When we have a cause that is broader than our own life or our own family, we are happier, and we are more connected to the world and to other people who share our cause.

Steve Goodier said:

“Causes do matter. And the world is changed by people who care deeply about causes—about things that matter. . . . All we really need is to be passionate about something important; something bigger than ourselves. And it’s that commitment to a worthwhile cause that changes the world.”

And maybe Winston Churchill said it best of all:

“What is the use of living, if it be not to strive for noble causes and to make this muddled world a better place for those who will live in it after we are gone?”

When we are busy with the small but important personal causes of our families and our careers, we feel like there is no room for any bigger cause. Yet just being a small part of something larger—something that we really believe in—gives us new energy and new meaning.

Well, my time is so limited and I have so little power; and the needs of the world are so big, we tell ourselves. But we need to remember the words of Edmund Burke:

“Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little.”

And he also said, more ominously,

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (and women) to do nothing.”

Now here is a very big statement for you to consider: There is no cause that will be more effective in meeting the needs and solving the problems of today’s world than the strengthening of families. Every social problem that affects our country—from crime to drugs to porn to poverty—is most effectively and efficiently impacted not by business or government programs or philanthropy but by stronger families. The biggest problems the world has are best solved at the smallest level—in the home.

But other than being a good parent in his or her own home, how does one single individual join this cause and help other families to be strong?

As of the first of September, there is a new answer to this question. The new book The Turning: Why the State of the Family Matters and What the World Can Do About It can become the manifesto—the banner under which we start a cause and a movement for stronger families. And you can be part of that cause and that movement.

All you need to do is read the book, encourage others to read it, and participate in some of the micro and macro solutions it suggests. (Micro meaning making your own family stronger, and macro meaning joining the coalitions the book outlines.)

Do it now! Remember what Anne Frank said:

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”