I was pondering about how “a small act of kindness” can have such a profound effect on someone else. Something done in a moment of kindness, friendship, love or concern can leave such a lasting impression that it will be remembered for an entire lifetime by them. The most amazing thing is that the giver of the act of kindness may or may not even think that he or she is actually doing anything “out of the ordinary” and might be very surprised as to the lasting impression that they have made.
Everyone has the opportunity to be judgmental in life, to raise an eyebrow and return a look of suspicion, shake our heads in mock disgust or to verbally reprimand someone who “offends” our chosen sensibilities. Human nature can cause us to be naturally suspicious of other people’s motives, lifestyles, decisions, appearance, and actions. These natural reactions can lead us to respond in a prejudiced or judgmental way toward people that might not look like us or in situations that don’t meet with our approval – as if we were somehow elected both judge and jury. It is in these situations that people can wield great hurt through the cutting action of words. The tongue is a formidable weapon when it forms words that are used against someone else.
I’m sure that you can remember moments in your life when someone did something for you or said something to you – or perhaps it’s what they didn’t say or do that made the impression – that you have carried with you ever since. Let’s think about those moments when we ourselves have a choice of what to say or do, or not say or do, to someone else. What we say, what we do, how we react – all impact other people’s lives – for better or for worse. May we always try to err on the positive side, make a positive effect and leave a positive impression – so someone else can carry that moment with them with fondness for the rest of their lives. Choose kindness.