A few years ago I frequently spotted bumper stickers urging us to practice “random acts of kindness.” I was always irritated at a low level way by the use of the word “random.” I realized that I wanted a bumper sticker that said “practice intentional acts of kindness.” It’s those acts that I have been reflecting on so far in Advent. The intentional things that others have done that have encouraged me throughout my life.I guess it can feel good to do something anonymously, but I have always appreciated the face to face context for kindness shown to me.
I enjoy this picture of me with a younger sibling who is clearly distressed. I seem to be trying to figure out what would help her to cheer her up.
I am reminded of a neighbor of mine when I was a single mother and my child and I were both very ill with a stomach bug. Everett was a widower and already in his late 70’s when we met. After not seeing us for two days, he came over to the house with a bowl of strawberry jello. He said,”I’m not much of a cook, but I thought this would help you feel better.”
An intentional act of kindness.