Sharing & Caring With Friends

Our Choice – Kindness

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Wouldn’t it be a much brighter and better world if we all practiced a little bit of kindness – more often?  I am going to try to do my part, and try to be kind more often!  Can we really change the world by doing this?  If you are a pessimist or a realist, you may be saying, “No, probably not.”  But if you are an optimist, you are probably nodding your head right now saying, “YES!  We can change the world by being a little nicer, a little nicer … one person at a time.”  SO, how about it?  Let’s make the world a little brighter, just in our little spot of the world.  Kindness can be contagious!

I mean, I just don’t think we should take kindness or kind gestures for granted.  Sometimes just a kind word or a gesture at the appropriate time can make all the difference in a person’s life.

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”  (Aesop)

 

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I have often received unexplained and unanticipated kind gestures at just the right moment in my life …. soon after the death of my parents.  Or sometimes after receiving difficult news over the phone.  Or after receiving an e-mail telling you a friend is in the hospital.  And… all of a sudden something wonderful happens.

And these acts of kindness can be very simple things –  someone gives you a warm, sincere handshake, someone sends you a “thinking of you, dear friend” card or you get a hilarious e-mail that makes you almost fall off your chair!    I can think of a few memorable things right off the top of my head:

  • One of my dear friends, Andrea, sent me a Mother’s Day card the first year after I lost my mom. (Simple gesture +  very meaningful = very touched Clare).
  • Another close friend, Pam, brought me flowers on the two year anniversary of my Mom’s death. (And I certainly love flowers). 

 

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  • I’ll never forget a dear friend brought my Dad a pizza in the hospital…. I didn’t know at that point, he would never come home again – but she sensed it. As she said goodbye to my Dad, she walked away with tears in her eyes.
  • Christine’s wedding … when we put together my oldest daughter, Christine’s, wedding in 6 – 8 weeks! Yikes – Our friends collectively created and assembled some beautiful “beachy” themed decorations for the reception.  (You ask what I DID in all this – I provided pizza because goodness knows I am the least crafty person you know)! 

 

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Why am I bringing up “kindness”, you say?  Because I believe it’s a simple “choice” we can make every day with anyone and everyone who crosses our path.  Whether it’s in person, a neighbor, the clerk in the store or a family member. And it can be through an in-person conversation, over the phone, through email or with a text message.

The Bible tells us:  Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act.”  Proverbs 3:27 (NIV)

We often miss the opportunity to do something nice, and I am the worst offender. Embarrassingly, I can think of numerous times years ago dragging toddlers through a checkout line at the grocery store, after the drudgery of working a job I wasn’t fond of, only to take out my bad mood on the checkout girl.  I mean, really?  She’s probably only making minimum wage.   Does she look like she needs this in her life?  (She’s probably barely able to pay her own bills or maybe she is in college, too).

 

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We are just imperfect humans, but we could all probably put in a little extra effort each day to give a kind word to someone in need, make eye contact with the store clerk and smile or end a telephone conversation with a positive comment.  I have one friend who sent a “reoccurring appointment” to her co-workers that said, “Smile, and have a great day!” This was their little secret reminder to do something unexpected and nice for someone that week.

“What is desired in a man is kindness, and a poor man is better than a liar.”  (Proverbs 19:22) NKIV

I have lately tried to remember to go the extra step to be nice, or at least NOT BE UNKIND.  My desire is to go the distance, make a conscious effort in being kind. 

 

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So, friends … My challenge to you is to do one little random act of kindness each week and make shall steps to be a little kinder, a little nicer, and create your own little ray of sunshine each and every day. 

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Looking forward to a little more sunshine in our world.

 ~Clare

 

 

 

 

Author
Clare is a 57-year-old fun loving Italian-American self-proclaimed “Jersey Girl” who believes, “Life ain’t easy street. Life is one of those crazy little city streets, complete with potholes that could swallow your car.” With one foot planted in fun and the other planted firmly in her Christian faith, Clare enjoys making people laugh while helping them navigate life’s “crazy little city streets”. Clare has raised two girls (now grown young adults) with her husband, Michial, Clare is ready to take on the challenges of making new friends through her blog, Life Ain’t Easy Street. With an aim to entertain while addressing topics important to women, Clare’s focus on the positive power of good stories, good friends, inspiring women, and strong faith will have you looking forward to reading the next post. Clare is a freelance writer who lives a real life in Jacksonville Beach, Florida.

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38 Comments

  • I love the “or at least not be unkind.” Somedays that’s what we manage. Great reminder that small things mean so much! It’s the kind smile to the mom towing around 5 hungry kids and just trying to get through the store, letting someone go first, etc. Your examples are great. I hope I remember this each day. If we ask the Lord to order our steps, I believe He gives us these assignments.

    • Clare says:

      Thanks Bonnie – yes, of course, I need to really remind myself “at least NOT BE UNKIND”!!!!!!   🙂  🙂  – I have to slap myself sometimes to remind myself to be kind!  Glad you enjoyed the post!

  • Carol says:

    Clare, you are so right about kindness.  I am proud of you!

     

    • Clare says:

      Thanks Carol – YOU are so so kind!  What would I do without you, sweet sister!!!!???? That’s the truth! !!!!!

  • Amy says:

    Great thoughts for the day.  I personally have been trying to be more kind by my words. I am the kind of person who when I am out and about, generally is too busy to stop and chat with friends I see in the store. Or am too shy to strike up a conversation with people.  But rushing about my day doesn’t make me feel better, it doesn’t make my friends feel better, it just makes me feel stressed which in turn makes me feel less kind. So I have been giving myself permission more often to take my dear sweet time!

    • Clare says:

      Good for you Amy!!!! I run around like a nut most of the time – rush rush rush!  I am trying more to just make eye contact and smile at people or say hi…. oh, as I get older… it’s the LITTLE things in life!!!!!   Thanks for your thoughts – I appreciate your comments!

  • Mary Collins says:

    What a thoughtful post. Those little acts of kindness go a long way when they are directed at someone who is hurting. I know, I’ve been on the receiving end. I will definitely participate in the random act of kindness movement you are starting.

    • Clare says:

      Ok Mary – now I am stirred up to really remind myself to be kind!!!!!   Yes, often simple acts of kindness can go a long way in a person’s life!  Thanks for your thoughts and sharing!  I appreciate it!  🙂  🙂

  • Pam says:

    I agree Clare! You have always been so sweet & kind to me! You send cards, which I am very bad about doing. I love you sweet friend! Let’s be friends for life. We are sisters in Christ!

    • Clare says:

      Pam, thanks for taking the time to comments!  I love you too and we are friends forever and sisters in the Lord!  Thanks for stopping by!!!!  🙂   🙂

       

  • It is so important to be kind! I love your kindness stories.

    • Clare says:

      Thanks, Brenda!  So glad you like the post and yes, it is important to be kind – I have to “force” myself to be often times!!!!   🙂  🙂

  • Kate Hardin says:

    Beautiful Post and a great reminder to be more kind. Love the personal examples.

    • Clare says:

      Thanks Kate – glad you enjoyed the post and hope it’s a reminder for all of us – especially me – to be more kind!!!!!  🙂  🙂

  • Rachel G says:

    Excellent post! I can still recall little moments of kindness that were shown to me years ago (notably: I one time burst into the locker room at my college in tears, after an argument with a relative, and a girl in the room took one look at me and handed me a donut, and said, “Sugar will make you feel better”. She didn’t even know me–but that one generous act has stuck with me for 6 years now). I hope I can, in the right moment, act in kind ways that will impact other’s lives for the better.

    • Clare says:

      Thanks for sharing that, Rachel, and I am CERTAINLY GLAD I am not alone that “sugar” is my comfort fix!!!!! Love this story – and that was truly an act of kindness – and these acts are usually “timed” perfectly!  i appreciate your comments!  🙂  🙂

       

  • Sarah Ann says:

    I love this idea! May we each seek to be a little more like Jesus throughout the day!  I’m sharing this sweet post today! 🙂

    • Clare says:

      Thanks so much for your thoughtful words and sharing, Sarah!  Yes, if we are reminded of Jesus more often throughout the day – I am sure we would ALL be a little kinder, I know I would be!

  • Sheryl says:

    Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts on kindness. A little goes a long way. So often we get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life. It is so important not to just display kindness, but teach our children the importance, as well.  Have a wonderful day!

    • Clare says:

      Thanks for your thoughts and comments, Sheryl!  Yes, we must teach our children, too – that’s so important.  And I am so often caught up in the “hustle and bustle” – I know most of us are – we forget to do the little but very meaningful important things – like a kind word, gesture or thought!

  • Sasha says:

    Great post. I homeschool, and my kids and I try to do “RAKs” on a regular basis. I pray it is instilling the idea of kindness in them for a long time to come.

    • Clare says:

      Great Sasha – You are instilling important qualities in your children, then, for sure!  Blessings and thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment!  🙂  🙂

  • Julie says:

    This reminds me of one of my favorite songs, Hands, by Jewel – ‘we are God’s hands’ and ‘in the end, only kindness matters.’ Thanks for sharing.

    • Clare says:

      Thanks Julie!  I don’t think I am familiar with that song but I will try to search it out soon.  Thanks for stopping by!  🙂  🙂

       

  • I like this – at least not be Unkind. 🙂

    I think for me, the thing that I remembered the most was old high school friends showing up at my brother’s funeral unannounced, and then having me over afterwards and feeding me hot chocolate and giving me a foot massage. I will never, ever forget that.

    • Clare says:

      Wow Jennie – that is memorable (especially the part about the foot massage)!!! Very, very thoughtful and kind friends – the kind you hold onto!!!! Yes, I have to remind myself to “choose” kindness… or like I had mentioned “at least not be unkind.”!!!!!!   🙂  🙂

  • Tracie says:

    One time I went to a conference where I was incredibly nervous. Then I hit my head really hard (I probably had a concussion, but I didn’t go to a doctor to make sure) in front of several people and proceeded to bleed for about 12 hours. It was….not a great experience. But in the middle of all that. When all I wanted to do was sit on the floor and cry, someone who worked at the conference center walked up to me and spoke some very kind words. It was such a blessing. And the rest of day, I held those words close and used them to help myself stay up off the floor.

    Kindness really does make a difference.

    • Clare says:

      Goodness Tracie what an unfortunate event!!!  I am so glad you were blessed by that kind person that made a difference – it’s unforgettable wasn’t it!!!????? Thanks for sharing that !

  • I wrote a few posts about kindness months ago and you’re so right, even the smallest gestures of kindness make a difference. A smile, a compliment…they can turn around someone’s day and they require minimal effort! If we all made even a small effort to be kind and reel in our criticism or snarky tendencies, what a world we’d have. 🙂 Wonderful post!

    • Clare says:

      Thanks Melanie – there’s probably not enough reminders on “kindness”!!!! I know I need to remind myself to be nice lots and lots of time during the day!  So glad you liked the post and thanks for taking the time to comment!  🙂  🙂

  • Nance Biswas says:

    Thanks for this reminder. Kindness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit that unless we had our communion with the Lord in a day, it’s challenging to be kind.  I’m challenged and blessed. 🙂

    • Clare says:

      Nance  – it is challenging to be kind without the Lord !  And, I am challenged daily!!!!   Thanks thanks for stopping by!  🙂  🙂

  • Earl-Leigh says:

    I love this post! It’s so true. Being kind is so simple yet it leaves a huge impact on other people.

  • Tamara says:

    Kindness is Eternall sunshine for the soul and a reminder that one radical extreme act of kindness changed the world for so many when Jesus paid our debt in full.  I think I can work on doing some random acts of kindness 🙂 beautiful post, Clare- thanks!!!

    • Clare says:

      Kindness is eternal sunshine, Tamara!  I like the way you put that!  We all can work a little harder at doing some random acts of kindness!  Thanks for stopping in!  🙂  🙂

  • shawn mitchell says:

    Your website is filled with encouragement. Its nice to see someone use Facebook to help others. God is using you in a big way Shawn

    • Clare says:

      I so appreciate the kind words, Shawn!  so glad you are encouraged!  Stay tuned for more!  Thanks so much for stopping by!  🙂  🙂

       

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