One of my favorite Facebook pages is Everyone Matters. Their message is very much in keeping with my Big Us philosophy and I visit the page often to read and contribute stories about people coming together in large and small ways to help each other and make the world better. It was on this page that I read a posting about Jim and his Acts Of Random Kindness Day. He decided for his birthday that he would perform an act of random kindness for each year he’d been alive. He created the Facebook page to celebrate and then friends and strangers began to pile on.
I decided to double-down on his strategy. I posted a story a a recent act of kindness I performed for a stranger and decided to do another one in Jim’s honor. This blog post is that second act of kindness which I’m performing for Jim, who is a total stranger but wants to make the world a better place and that’s good enough for me. Please go to Jim’s Acts Of Random Kindness Day on Facebook and like the page or post your story. Let’s blow Jim and the world away with the amount of response a simple good will gesture can generate.
Here is what I posted on Jim’s page…
Yesterday as I was walking into the warehouse store, I noticed a rather petite and older woman wheeling her cart to the back of a car in a handicapped parking spot. I asked if I could help her unload the cart and she agreed after a moment’s hesitation. I was wearing my black leather jacket, boots and mirror shades and I wondered if she’d been put off by my appearance.
There were some heavy items in there and I took care to load the heaviest stuff first, which required some rearranging of the cart but kept the lighter items safe. As she watched, she told me that she had in fact been a bit uneasy about accepting my help but could see by the care I was taking with her things that I “am a kind person.”
She then revealed that she had fallen recently and was recovering from 4 cracked ribs. She pulled up her sleeve to show me some nasty bruises. “God always sends me angels,” she said. She then offered me a gift card she’d purchased in the store for someone else. I thanked her but declined to accept the card. “I’m from the *volunteer* angel department,” I said, and wished her a speedy recovery.
I had no idea about her injuries when I stopped to help. Other than being petite and elderly, she looked strong enough to have handled the load with perhaps a bit of difficulty. It certainly wasn’t obvious what had qualified her for a handicapped parking placard. But what I thought was a minor gesture of kindness saved her considerable pain. No act of kindness is trivial. Individually they may matter more than you know. Collectively, they can change the world.