On the giving and receiving of kindness

3

Today is the first day of Lent.

An act of kindness given from one person to another has its effect on the giver and the receiver independent of each other.

If a kind act is offered and received, it flowers in the life of the one who receives it regardless of the motives of the one who offered it. Some kind acts are offered from selfish or manipulative motives. In these cases the goodness comes to the recipient even though the soul of the giver will not be helped and may well be harmed by the act.

Some people are unable to receive kindness. They live so deeply in their wounds that a single act of kindness disappears into their pain with no more effect than a pebble tossed into a pond. But this reality does not diminish the goodness of the gift, and the soul of the one who offered the kindness is enriched regardless.

As I reflect on my life, this first day of Lent in 2014, I pray that I have kindness and mercy to offer those God puts into my path. And I pray that when kindness is given to me, I will receive it with gratitude and love. Because when a joyous giver meets someone able to receive in love, the goodness is magnified in the lives of both and shines for all the world to see.

kindness350

 

Follow me here:
RSS
Facebook
Twitter
YouTube
LinkedIn
Instagram
SHARE
  • Kurt N

    Gordon, that lovely piece and the illustration together I think capture much the same spirit as O. Henry’s The Gift of the Magi, one of my very favorite short stories. Thank you for this.

  • Rachel Barenblat

    Amen. Beautiful reflection. Wishing you a meaningful and thoughtful Lent.

  • pastordt

    Lovely. What a treat for this very tired, injured old body to discover this cache of jewels today. Thank you so much.