Posts Tagged ‘act of kindness’

AOK Wednesday…sort of

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011 by JEL

I was in the mood for something positive, something kind to share with everyone. I haven’t done an Act of Kindness (AOK) Thursday post in a while, so I started foraging for stories about people being kind to one another and came across this.

There’s this company called eFoods Global that has introduced Acts of Kindness (AoK) Currency, and the press release certainly sounds like people can get free “money” for food simply by being kind to their fellow humans. And I believe that they can. Awesome, right?! Except the only kindness that qualifies is referring other humans to eFoods Global’s products.

Go to their website and view the video on the Home page. They make storable food, the kind you put in your bunker, bomb shelter, or basement in case of crisis. Their business model relies on network marketing, meaning people referring people who refer people who refer people. It’s a powerful model, good business, and their video has all the polish of a Saturday afternoon infomercial.

But, really, is it kindness–or commerce?

AOK Thursday: Daily Interactions

Thursday, March 10th, 2011 by JEL

I think a lot of people view “being kind” as taking on some sort of project. They need to brainstorm what to do, bounce it off a couple friends, plan it out, practice, and then execute. Well, that may be effective for big-whopper acts of kindness, but what about your daily interactions with people you see every day? These are certainly more frequent opportunities for kindness and may yield more benefit.

This Amanda Marrazzo column was well done. Think about how you treat the people you see the most…

“So, think about the guy who gives you coffee in the morning, the garbage man, waiter or waitress, anyone who is doing anything that makes your life a bit better. We are all of equal value sharing this earth for a short time, working hard to make a better life. Each interaction presents an opportunity to leave the world a little warmer or a lot colder.”

AOK Thursday: Bags Fly Free +

Thursday, January 20th, 2011 by JEL

It’s been kind of a rough week in Christian news, don’t you think? The new Alabama Governor, Robert Bentley, started off the week with this doozy of a quote:

“Anybody here today who has not accepted Jesus Christ as their savior, I’m telling you, you’re not my brother and you’re not my sister, and I want to be your brother.”

He has since apologized, and as Jesus taught forgiveness, perhaps we’ll cut him a little slack. Then you’ve got Franklin Graham, son of Billy, complaining about the terrific Obama speech gave at the memorial for the Tucson shooting victims. Apparently there wasn’t enough Christian God in the text for Graham, so he made the gigantic leap to:

“They scoff at the name of Jesus Christ.”

So, I need a little reminder that there is some kindness and sanity in this world. For that, I’ll turn to the Southwest Airlines pilot who purposely delayed the departure of a flight so that one of his late-arriving passengers could make the trip to say goodbye to a dying grandson. When the passenger finally boarded, the pilot was there to greet him:

“They can’t go anywhere without me and I wasn’t going anywhere without you. Now relax. We’ll get you there. And again, I’m so sorry.”

AOK Thursday: Giving

Thursday, December 16th, 2010 by JEL

In the spirit of the Christmas season (which, by the way, would be nice all year long), I thought as we’re giving each other gifts, we might re-examine the true meaning of giving. That is, giving to those less fortunate who are really in need. Jesus had something to say about the subject:

“If anyone sues you to take away your coat, let him have your cloak also. Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. Give to him who asks you, and don’t turn away him who desires to borrow from you.” – Matthew 5:40-42

Brought to present day, here’s a nice story of a Waukegan waitress who took Jesus’ instructions to heart (whether she knew it or not).

AOK Thursday: Veterans Day

Thursday, November 11th, 2010 by JEL

Kindness can come from anywhere at any time. Even in war. I found this interview with Carver McGriff gripping. Not just because of his even-tempered account of D-Day, but for his honesty and integrity and his deep thinking about what he had been a part of. His story about the 3 Mexicans is a lesson for all of us.

Watch, think, and thank a Veteran for their service:

AOK Thursday: Online Comments

Thursday, October 7th, 2010 by JEL

Since canceling my newspaper subscription about 6 months ago, I have relied almost exclusively on online sources of information (except my indispensable New Yorker in print). By and large, this has worked out fine. Except when I get to the bottom of whatever article I’m reading. I know what’s coming and I know I should just move on, but something compels me to scroll down into the very depths of Hades itself.

I’m talking about the “comments” people post. It could be a story about baby pandas or a child prodigy or a new all-natural candy bar that tastes great and has no calories and the comments would be still be filled to the brim with hate and churning stomach acids. People screaming at each other and the world at large. I won’t even mention the political articles.

Wouldn’t Jesus be appalled at this behavior? You may hide behind your WACKBOY885 handle and think all of your bile is anonymous fun, but it’s not. It’s hate pollution.

If you believe Jesus is watching all things at all times, consider yourself in line for a good smiting.

Then consider some kindness.

AOK Thursday: Judge’s Orders

Thursday, September 30th, 2010 by JEL

We’ve learned there’s nothing “random” about acts of kindness. They are intentional, chosen behaviors of goodwill toward others. This video takes the “not random” concept to the extreme: Judge Trudy White in Baton Rouge issues a court order to Aramis Jackson:

“The court is going to require that you do three random acts of kindness which you don’t have to come back to the court to report on. That’s between you and your maker.”

Watch the full story:

AOK Thursday: Where Kindness and Justice Meet

Thursday, September 16th, 2010 by JEL

Earlier this week Ft. Worth’s Broadway Baptist Church announced it was cutting ties with the Baptist General Convention of Texas. Ties that ran long and deep, since 1886. The issue was one of the convention’s articles that denies membership to churches that “act to affirm, approve, or endorse homosexual behavior.”

Broadway’s Pastor, Brent Beasley, wrote a letter to BGCT saying that his church is committed to:

“welcoming all persons into our church, including the outcast, those on the margins of society, and those who have not found that welcome in many other places, including, unfortunately, many churches.” [As a result, Broadway Baptist Church has] “become a vital and diverse community of faith, coming from many different backgrounds and representing many different perspectives, but united in the love and grace of Jesus Christ.”

So how is this “radical,” very Christian stance working out?

“These are good days at Broadway. Our finances are strong — our giving is ahead of expenses and well ahead of last year; the spirit of the congregation is positive and healthy; our worship attendance is on the rise; new families and individuals are finding their place at Broadway.  We continue to serve those in need in a multitude of ways.  We are focused on our mission in the present and beginning to look to the future, which is exciting.”

AOK Thursday: Need Some Ideas?

Thursday, August 5th, 2010 by JEL

Your random act of kindness won’t seem quite so “random” if you need to pull an idea from the list, but it’s the kindness that counts! Loki Morgan provides seven excellent places to start:

  1. When you walk past someone look at them and smile.
  2. Pick up trash and litter that you see, even if it is not in your yard.
  3. Hold the door for the person behind you. If you are the recipient of this act of kindness make sure to thank the person. (This is a big bugaboo for me. People who ignore my kindness often get a loud “YOU’RE WELCOME” which never fails to startle. Admittedly, this pettiness on my part diminishes the intended kindness.)
  4. Send a letter to someone you love. Emails do not count for this random act of kindness.
  5. Do extra chores or do a chore that no one in your family likes to do.
  6. Tip your waiter or waitress more than 20%.
  7. When you ask someone how they are doing, listen to what they have to say. (This is another big one for me. My wife, in particular, seems to think “HiHowAreYou” is a single word that doesn’t really require a response.)

AOK Thursday: Attracting Kindness

Thursday, July 29th, 2010 by JEL

In every act of kindness there are two players: the giver of the kindness; and the recipient. In these weekly posts we’ve tended to write about people giving kindness, how important it is, how great it makes the giver feel, and how it is the manifestation of Jesus’ “love your neighbor” teachings in the Gospels.

But what about the recipients? We all like being on the receiving end of a little kindness, right? Are there things we can do (or not do) that can increase our chances of kindness flowing our way? In a word, yes. Check out this re-enactment of the “beach blanket experiment” and see what kinds of behaviors attract (or repel) the kindness of strangers.