"Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person" ~ Mother Teresa
Repost from March, 2010
For months now, I've been struggling with a strong pull to somehow make a difference in this world. Maybe it's the fact that I turned 50 this year, or the nagging feeling that I am taking up space on this earth without making a contribution; but either way, I've known for a while that I am being called to a greater purpose--I just didn't know what it was. Sitting in Mass last night during the Easter Vigil, I was moved by the beautiful service in the tiny little church we were visiting in Dillon, Colorado--aptly named "Our Lady of Peace." Each parishioner held a candle in the darkened church and as I was enveloped in the strong smell of incense and got lost in the readings, I felt at peace. I glanced around and to the right of the altar, a family sat in a darkened corner. I noticed they had arrived a bit late and did not receive a candle. Instinctively and without hesitation, I walked over to the mother of the family and handed her my candle. Our eyes met for a moment and I not only saw, but also felt the gratitude as she looked at me. It was at that moment that I knew . . . a simple act of random kindness was all it took to bring happiness to another. It didn't cost me a thing and I expended little effort, but with that single gesture, I knew I made a difference to someone. My mind began to reel . . . was this what I was being called to do? If I were to make just one such gesture a day, would it make a difference? Could my kindness possibly encourage others to be kind? Just like the experiment in the movie "Pay it Forward," I wondered what it would be like if we all took just a moment a day to show unsolicited warmth and concern for another. It sounds so simple, and yes--I am a dreamer, but on the other hand, is there a down-side? At the very least, it will make me a better person and at best . . . well, who knows?
And just like the candle in mass last night, I want to spread Christ's light to others as He calls us to do. So starting tomorrow, I pledge to make one random gesture of kindness every chance I get. If you read this blog, try it yourself and share your random acts and the responses you get and maybe together we can start a ground-swelling of selflessness.