The act of random kindness has gotten much press. There is even a “Random Acts of Kindness” foundation and Web site. But as I was thinking about this, I wondered if kindness should be so random. Wouldn’t it be better if kindness were purposeful and prevalent?
Long ago in a letter he wrote to a church in Rome, Paul said, “If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly. Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good.”
This kind of behavior isn’t random. It’s focused and determined. Like helping the woman in the grocery store checkout line who is trying to unload her cart with one arm in a sling; Or sitting and waiting with the elderly woman whose bus is running late. What about paying the bridge toll for the family behind you? Or taking the trash out for your husband even though it’s his job?
I’ve done these things and more and it’s not just satisfying, it is fulfilling. Something about getting outside yourself and helping others feels good and right. Maybe it’s because it makes us just a little more like Jesus, Who not only helped others, He gave His all. He sacrificed His very life.
Certainly the least we can do is be a little less selfish, a little more observant, and purposefully randomly kind.