We often heard people claiming to be like candles burning themselves for the sake of others but on 3rd Ramadhan 887 years ago, Shaykh Abdul Qadir Al-Jilani said not to be like that. One should first take care of oneself before Allah equips with the required skills and knowledge in serving others. It's Allah who will prepare the person for such a role and ultimately it is He who guides people and not he/she.
"O young man! Attend to your own needs, be useful to yourself and then to others. Do not be like the candle that burns itself out while providing light for others. Do not embark on something on account of you, your passions (hawa) and your lower self (nafs). When the Lord of Truth (subhanahu wa ta'ala) wants you for some purpose, He will equip you for it. If he wishes you to be useful to His creatures, He will send you back to them, and He will give you firmness and courtesy for dealing with them, as well as strength to endure the trouble they cause. He will make room in your heart for creatures. He will open your breast wide and fill it with the elements of wisdom (hikam). He will take care of your inner and gladden your innermost being (sirr). So now it will be He, not you..."
Source: The Sublime Revelation
Credit: Muhtar Holland & Ruslan Moore of Al Baz Publishing