Every person in the world likes to feel important. Men and women are glad when they feel needed, and so are boys and girls. To know that someone depends on you and believes that what you do and say really matters makes you feel good and want to do your best.
When I was two years old, my father died, leaving my mother and six children. My oldest brother, Lincoln, was seventeen at the time and was still in high school.
When he graduated, Lincoln began working full time to support us. He never complained about having to work so hard at such a young age or about not being able to go to college or serve a mission, both of which he wanted so much. Lincoln was always dependable and faithful, and later in life he managed a business and served as a wonderful stake president and mission president. Many people loved him because of his character and his cheerful, gracious personality.
It was Lincoln who taught me how important it is to feel needed.
One day the two of us were riding from Salt Lake City to Morgan, Utah, in a small old truck on a narrow road. It was a big adventure for me, a little boy who had never been on a trip in an automobile before nor traveled very far from home.
My brother had explained to me that we would be traveling quite fast and that it would be dangerous if a tire should blow out. Lincoln had me hold tightly to his arm, instructing me that if a tire should blow out, he would try to keep the steering wheel steady. He asked me to help him by holding on to his arm with all of my strength.
The next hour, as we drove along the road and up the canyon to Morgan, was one of the most exciting times of my life. It was the first time that I ever remember feeling really necessary—really important. We didn’t have a flat tire, but my wonderful big brother had made his little brother feel needed.
I have since traveled to many places around the world, but I remember that trip with my brother and the lesson he taught me as well as I remember any travel adventure.
Each one of us can make other people happy and make them feel good by helping them to know that what they do and say is truly important.