Good intentions; they say the road to Hell is paved with them and that may be true. Hopefully, I’ll never find out. What I do know is a lot of good intentions are lost every day. For example, I intended to write more this year. That intention got lost somewhere in the minutiae of everyday tasks like household chores, social media, daily errands, you name it. None of them so all-important that they couldn’t be put aside for just a moment or two.
My sister’s pastor has a favorite saying: “I can’t do everything, but I can do something.” He talks about “mindful giving” – being prepared to do good. My sister has taken this advice to heart. She carries $5 restaurant cards with her, to give to homeless people she sees on the street. She goes beyond just handing out the cards; she’ll spend a few moments chatting with each person, getting to know them in some small way. I’m thinking that small kindness probably feeds their souls and means as much as the hot meal they get from the gift card.
My sister is a prime example of making good intentions an action verb rather than a noun. She inspires me to do my best, to spread kindness in any way I can. Her actions have inspired others to do what they can. She makes hats for charity and has taught others to use the loom she knits on. Those people, in turn, have created hats for charity. And so the circle widens, little ripples spreading outward in the giant pond of life. I think this must be what the Bible means by “cast your bread upon the waters.”
My sister will say I was the one who taught her to use the loom, and she is correct. I also knit hats for charity. But she takes each lesson she learns and expands upon it. That is why she is my inspiration.
We all need inspiration, a reason to move forward and put our good intentions into action. For some, their faith is the impetus. For others, it’s the kindness of strangers. It’s not hard to find inspiration if you look. Next time you see kindness – pass it on. Did someone open a door for you? Do that for the next person. Did someone share a smile when you needed one most? Give that gift to a stranger. Carry small bills or change, to toss in the red bucket. And thank that volunteer standing in the cold, ringing the bell. Be mindful of how you can give.
The problems of the world can seem overwhelming, especially at this time of year. It seems like we are being bombarded with requests to give. Don’t let that paralyze you. If everyone did one small act of kindness, think what we could accomplish! You don’t have to save the world, and you don’t have to give to every charity. Start small. Say thank you, smile at a stranger, hold a door, offer that bell-ringer a cup of coffee or hot cocoa.
It’s not necessary to do everything. But it’s vital, that you do something. Start today.
Today’s blog is my something, my gift to all who find inspiration from my words. I am grateful and nourished by your support. Thank you.
“Wherever your journey takes you, remember – tread lightly, wander mindfully, speak kindly; share wisdom, lend a hand, treat all as friends, if you can.” ~ d.wylie
~with love and thanks to my sister, Deb and my husband, Rick, whose acts of everyday kindness inspire me daily~