It was late in the afternoon when I made a quick stop at a busy grocery store. The store was filled with people doing the same as me. The checkout lines were long, and people seemed to be in a hurry (and troubled by the long lines), and the few cashiers available. I chose the line that looked the shortest, as we all do, and then I did not have anything else to do but wait, and wait.
The cashier in our line, was a young man (perhaps in his late teens or early twenties). It was a bit unusual, as there is usually women doing the job at this time of the day. I wondered to myself, if he was working his way through the local college? I watched him calmly, efficiently and kindly tackle the task in front of him, with a smile for everyone. To me, it seemed like a stressful task, with so many people(some quite impatient) lined up and waiting.
When it was my turn, I was so caught up in unloading my cart, and thinking of the things I had to do when I got home, that I almost forgot to acknowledge him. I wondered how many times in the past, that I did forget to do that. But, this time I did acknowledge him, and I told him that in observing him, I noticed the efficiency, the calmness, and the kindness with which he tackled his job...... that I wasn't sure I could have handled it the same way. His eyes lit up and he thanked me.
I left the store with a smile. His kindness lifted my spirits.
Later in the evening, I was thinking back over the simple, quiet example I had witnessed in a large, crowded grocery store, and it made me pray that I would be able to share kindness with those I come in contact with day in and day out. It made me aware of what a difference that can make in an ordinary day's events.
Awhile back, I read a quote on kindness that stuck with me;
It was shared by Mother Teresa;
"Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness;
kindness in your face,
kindness in your eyes,
kindness in your smile."
Pictures from my archives of unsolicited kindness, being exhibited in the midst of everyday happenings.
Or like John Wesley put it;
"Do all the good you can.
By all the means you can.
In all the ways you can.
In all the places you can.
At all the times you can.
To all the people you can.
As long as you ever can."
Kindness did make a difference in my day yesterday and so many days of my life.
Let me never forget, that "kindness does give birth to kindness", as I face my day today...no matter if I feel like it or not. And, thanks to the young man at the checkout, for reminding me of this important fact of life.
Hoping you each have the opportunity to show alittle kindness to someone today!