The world isn’t always a friendly, happy place to be in; many times people wear fakes smiles to mask their true emotions. The music legend and artist Fela Kuti called it “Suffering and Smiling”. To most people, hope is what keeps us going.
It can be a real pleasure being in a friendly environment, where people greet one another with warm smiles and show genuine interest and care for each other’s well being. Sometimes all it takes to create that positive atmosphere is a few “Random Acts of Kindness”.
When was the last time you surprised someone at your workplace with a cup of tea or coffee, just because you thought he or she might need it? And not because you needed something in return. To care is human and to do so without reason is divine.
To buttress my point, I will share a “Random Act of Kindness” I received in church. One particular Sunday, I was under the weather, I almost didn’t attend church because I just wasn’t in the right frame of mind or mood but I knew I was scheduled to serve (I serve as a teacher in the children’s church) and that meant I couldn’t miss church. I managed to get myself dressed up in my beautiful floral dress and eventually made it to church, though with a struggle. A few minutes into service; while I was busy tagging the children; a young man in the protocol unit walked up to me and asked “Are you okay? I saw you walk into church earlier and you seemed a bit agitated”. Immediately my face lit up, I began to smile.
Then I responded “I’m okay, I’m just under the weather”, he empathized with me and he pointed me in the direction of where I would find medical assistance. Then he said “don’t worry, you will be alright” with a very warm smile as he walked away.
My smile was not to hide my worries or pain as most people would do, I was smiling because a random person, who didn’t even know who I was, showed genuine concern for me and that was my first point of healing, the rest is history.
Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Cultivate kindness in your life – the way you think is the way you behave. If you make a habit of being kind to yourself, your behaviour towards others becomes kind.
- Learn the language of kindness. Be aware of small chances to open your heart to others (something as light as a smile counts)
- Soften your judgement, anger and criticism of self and others
- Acknowledge the divinity in yourself and in others
- Listen deeply; respect yours and others’ feelings and perspectives
- Breathe in divinity….. Breathe out kindness and love
When we consciously engage in the acts of kindness and make them part of our everyday life, it can lift the heaviest burden and also has the potential to create a positive ripple effect in both the give. Kindness can neutralize fear and suspicion and has the ability to interrupt the pervasive cycle of pain, struggle and suffering that we see every day in the world.
Breathe in – Discover love and compassion within you
Breathe out – Bathe the world in love.
God bless you as you show Random Acts of Kindness.
Written by: Bridget Okuma