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Take the Kindness Challenge...

The big snow storm that hit the East Coast of the United States a few years ago prompted countless "random acts of kindness." Have you ever been the recipient of a random act of kindness? Or better still have you ever given one?

Generosity warms the spirit. The act of giving, no matter how small, opens our hearts and spreads joy to the giver of the gift as well as the recipient. Random Acts of Kindness are the perfect springboard to leap into generosity. But what exactly are Random Acts of Kindness? Simply put, they are good deeds done for strangers who could use a little blessing.

Agreed we all have stress in our lives. We all have good days and the not-so good days...but there's nothing like a Random Act of Kindness to pull any person out of a lousy mood.

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In our long ago Chicago days, my wife and I used to make sure we had extra change with us when we traveled the tollway system. We would pull up to the booth and give the attendant our toll, plus pay the toll for the car behind us. And the reactions that we got for this were priceless. While some people sped away, unable to understand they had been the recipients of a Random Act of Kindness, most were appreciative. Some even made the effort to catch up to us and thank us.

Another target for Random Acts of Kindness is the drive-thru window. If you go through a fast food joint for breakfast and have an extra four dollars, pay for the meal of the person behind you. Imagine their surprise and delight when they pull up to the window to pay for their food, only to be told, "The guy in front of you already paid for it."

Random Acts of Kindness can be big or small. If you would rather be more generous than a sandwich or toll booth change, perhaps you can buy groceries for a needy family. If you can, put the groceries on their front porch without them knowing. Go for it. What's the worst thing that could happen?

If you are unable to buy them food or are uncomfortable doing it get them a gift card from the local supermarket. Find somebody who knows the family in need (maybe their pastor, or a neighbour) and ask them to give them the card, but not to tell them the gift is from you. Random Acts of Kindness are best served anonymously...

Be creative with your Random Acts of Kindness. Have fun with them. Make them a family project. If you think you get a charge from it, wait until you see how the kids get into it.

The possibilities are endless, as are the opportunities. We just have to train ourselves to be watchful for the chance to share God’s blessings.

It can be as simple as a greeting card slipped onto a stranger's car windshield that says, "You are loved". You could even send flowers to a hospital patient you've never met.

Opportunities to share love surround us every day. It's up to each of us to grab hold of those opportunities and turn them into Random Acts of Kindness.

- By Chris Courtney,

Illustrations: Ms. Lyn Kriegler Elliott

- Heart2Heart Team

Dear Reader, did this article inspire you in any way? Would you like to share you feelings with us? If so please contact us at mentioning your name and country. Thank you for your time.

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Vol 6 Issue 10 - OCTOBER 2008
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