Random Acts of Kindness

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” – Robert Louis Stevenson, writer

I spotted this snow angel in the park yesterday and, beyond how well it was made, it gave me a lot of food for thought. As I moved away from it, I wondered if the angel’s creator had any idea that others were still enjoying what they’d done.

I’m still thinking about it this morning, as today is Random Acts of Kindness Day. With random acts of kindness, we don’t always get credit for or see the reactions of the recipients of our deeds. Sometimes we have to have faith that we’ve made a difference.

Oddly enough, a few weeks ago, I read a reflection that posed the question, “What is your purpose? How do you know if you’re making a difference?” To be honest, I’ve really struggled to find an answer. Especially the part about making a difference.

I believe that our purpose is to discover our unique abilities and then give them away for the benefit others. So over the years, I’ve thought that maybe sharing my worldview through photos was my purpose – that maybe I can help others see beauty or quirkiness in the world that they might otherwise miss.

But how do I know if that’s a legit purpose? And what does it really mean to make a difference?

Maybe the answer lies somewhere in the philosophy behind random acts of kindness. Maybe we’re supposed to give of ourselves without an expectation of seeing the benefit to others — and have faith that we’re making a difference.  Worry about planting seeds from the heart, not the harvest. I’m not sure if that’s the answer, but it’s what I’m going with for now.

In the meantime, Happy Random Acts of Kindness Day. Whether you feed someone’s parking meter, clean the snow off someone’s car, pay for the meal of the car behind you in the drive thru – or someone does these things for you, may you know kindness today and every day.

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