Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Do One Thing... By Nina Keegan Owens

I will never forget one hectic but blessed morning I had a few years ago. It was really just like any other typical, rushed, everyone needing to get out the door type of morning that we all have from time to time. You know the drill, alarm... Snooze button... alarm... repeat this process a few more times, then like a crazed maniac you race to begin the chaotic daily process of waking up, getting the kids fed and out of the door for school, and getting yourself ready for work. The scene is the disorganized, scattered, pure definition of mayhem.
I finally get out the door and head to the nearest Starbucks haunt for my much needed morning cup of joe only to see that the line, of course is much longer than usual, I wait for what seems like an eternity, isn't it always that way when you are late? I hastily flip back and forth from checking the time to checking on my growing list of morning emails until finally, "One vente nonfat latte please!" When I start to hand the cashiere the money to pay for my morning addiction, she smiles at me and says, "A man gave me a one hundred dollar bill and told me to buy all the coffee for the people in line until the money is all spent so your coffee is free today!"
Imagine the wonderful surprise I had received, a blessing of kindness in the midst of my stressful morning routine from someone I will never even meet or know. I experienced my good fortune along with several others who were all blessed with free coffee and goodies that morning as well. We all just smiled and were thrilled to have been so blessed, it had turned out to be not such a bad morning after all.

I thought about the gentleman that purchased our coffees and thought he was probably every bit as hurried to get to work as the rest of us but he took a few extra seconds to just bless some patrons in a coffee shop that he didn't even know. He would get no thanks, just the great feeling of happiness one would get from doing such a deed.

Receiving such a wonderfully random act of kindness, not only changed my whole demeanor for the day but it blessed me and inspired me to pay it forward in some other way. It encouraged me to be a blessing to someone else in as random and unasuming kind of way that I was just blessed. Kindness.... Pure kindness..no tricks, no pay backs.. by definition, kindness means being marked by good and charitable behavior and the virtue of having a good disposition and a positive concern for others. It can be the joy of our lives to do good deeds for others without expecting anything in return. When we follow this desire there will be a kindness in everything we think, do, say, and feel. A savored protocol to live by and follow. He who does sow kindness and courtesy will reap an abundance of friendship and a glorious inner peace one can only get from doing good! We will greatly please the Lord when we are doing His work and we will inspire others to do the same.

I think too often in our very busy and hurried lives, we can greatly underestimate the power of a what a kind word, a cheerful smile, a listening ear, a heartfelt compliment or a simple random act of kindness and compassion can have on turning someone's day around.

Have you ever been having a pretty lousy day when all of a sudden someone pays you a sweet compliment or kindly offers to help you out with something, or maybe clear out of the blue you receive an uplifting phone call or email from someone that was thinking about you or praying for you.
These simple random acts of kindness can change the ways the corners of someone's mouth is turned and can put a smile not only on their face but in their hearts as well. There is an amazing magnitude of power buried in a tiny display of kindness, not only for the person on the receiving end but the bearer of the kindness as well.

(Acts 20:35) it is better to give than to receive...

Examples of well meaning joy and random displays of kindness can be contageous, it can start with one person doing just one thing! That one touch of kindness can have an endless snowball effect. Goodness seems to multiply and pick up speed, gathering momentum until a loving energy and a force of compassion sweeps its way into our lives and begins to implement positive change in all things, people, surroundings, and circumstances. A trickle of kindness can turn into a stream, a stream into a river, a river into a flood of kindness that spills over into a massive ocean of people all paying it forward, passing along the joy, the goodness and the kindness, extending out across the borders of hatred and laying a foundation of favor and blessings until kindness is a certainty rather than an occasional rarity. Kindness can cause a chain reaction that can change the very way we think, which can have a massive impact on how we treat others. We can walk in love. We can be grown up Christians that live what we preach, and by doing so, we can lead others to follow suit. In the Bible we are taught to walk in love. The Scriptures also tell us what love is....

(1Corinthians13:4-8) Love is patient, Love is KIND, it is not jealous, it does not brag and is not arrogant, it does not act becomingly, it is not its own, it is not easily provoked and does not take into account a wrong suffered. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, real love never fails. Now abide in faith, hope and love, these three, but the greatest of these is love.

Wherever we are, or happen to be, wherever there is humanity, there is an endless need for generosity, kindness and compassion. We all desire the exact same things, we all want to feel loved and cherished, we want a purpose. In the end, that's all that matters. We as Christians are put in place to be stewards of the Lord, to lead by example. We need to be ready and willing to reach out and bless others at every available opportunity. We can all get out of our cushy little comfort zones and ask ourselves daily, "What can I do to bless someone else today?" "Am I doing all I can to walk in love, to help others and to be an example of kindness of spirit?"

Start today, Do one thing!! One small, random thing!! Kindness comes in many forms, it can be as simple as a few sweet words, or an encouraging compliment. Bake some cookies or offer to cook dinner for the single mom down the street. Be a kind neighbor that will water the plants or help with the yard. Take someone's shopping cart back for them or help carry the heavy groceries for someone that's struggling to do so. Offer to babysit without pay to give some stressed parents a much needed night out. Let someone go ahead of you in line, give up your seat to someone standing, or buy that random cup of joe that will make a crazed mom's day better!

One thing I can assure you is that your good works will bless you in ways you would never have imagined, or have expected.. Blessings of pure joy and an an imeasurable happiness will overwhelm you, God makes sure of that. Your heart reaps the endless joyful rewards when you have made someone else smile for no other reason than just that ... No act of kindness, no matter how small is ever wasted because it does more for the human soul than anyone could ever conceive. Go ahead, do one thing!!!

( Col 3:12). Therefore as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves in compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

Heavenly Father we thank you that you will lead us to be a blessing to others today, give us opportunities to be of service to help others. We thank you that we will be at the right place at the right time and feel your gentle nudges to spread kindness! In Jesus name!

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