Friday, January 29, 2010

The Power of Kindness

 "Kindness is a language we all understand. Even the blind can see it and the deaf can hear it."  Mother Teresa

I slumped in the oversized chair and closed my eyes. I couldn't bear to look at the kindness etched on their faces. It hurt too much. I was used to fighting to get my needs met....fighting against people who used me...hurt me for their own purposes.   

You can come here anytime...no questions asked. And.help yourself to anything in the fridge or cupboards. I sat frozen in that chair....hardly able to breathe.....shivering even though it was warm in the room. It was because of their kindness.....their gentle words...it stunned me....took me off guard. I had no idea how to react to it. 

Kindness - it was something I hadn't known.....something I didn't understand. I sat in that chair holding myself rigid...on guard...suspicious of this couple who didn't want to take anything from me. Instead....they just wanted to show kindness. 

Kindness - it felt strange....painful.  I knew how to fight people who wanted something from me. I had become an expert at biting, kicking, running. I knew nothing about staying...nothing about accepting kindness. 

It's taken me a long time to trust the goodness from others. Even now, when I'm really tired....I can feel my guard go up....anticipating someone wanting to hurt me. 

That couple ran a drop in centre. They never put any pressure on me to do anything. They simply let me come and go whenever I wanted. When it was cold out and I had nowhere to go, they let me stay there. I couldn't talk. I couldn't even say thank-you. They accepted that....and never forced me to say or do anything....They never asked for anything in return. I've never forgotten them. I've never forgotten what they did for me. I don't know if they even knew the effect they had. I hope they did.

And there were others - a social worker, a cop, this guy who worked in a kitchen in a restaurent....when I wanted to give up...they reached out and touched me with their kindness.

I want to live my life paying forward the kindness that had been given to me...the kindness that made a difference. 

19 comments:

Deborah Ann said...

That's a picture of love. For this couple to simply be there for you, without expecting anything in return. Real love is a beautiful thing!

Zan said...

I am so glad they were there for you. I am glad that somehow along your truly painful journey there were glimpses of kidness.
I think such moments contributes to keeping the hope alive.
I am glad you are alive.
And you're a truly truly kind person.

xx

Wylie said...

This post inspires me & makes me want to love & ask nothing in return.
Wylie

RCUBEs said...

Sometimes, that's what I see from the inmates I deal with, that they don't know how to react to kindness. Let alone, they are still in that dark place with nowhere to go to, feeling hopeless.

There is nothing beautiful than to be able to receive God's love and which in turn empowers us to love others unconditionally. The way that couple showed they cared for you.

I know God will bring people into your paths where you will have that opportunity of being able to give your love and kindness, the way our Savior had loved us first. Awesome post. Have a great weekend. Blessings to you sister.

Crown of Beauty said...

This is my first time here, I hopped over from Arise to WRite.

I like the honest way you write, revealing your emotions so beautifully...so that your readers can relate, and even receive hope and healing for themselves.

Look forward to visiting again and reading more and discovering the beautiful person that God created you to be! It's a privilege.

Blessings,
Lidj

Dulce said...

Oh my Dearest Sarah
This is so beautiful from you to tell us... how can we keep inside a shell for so long...
I am glad you see kindness as it is... so many people out there full of the gifts we also have but needed to hide- for whiever reason-
It's never that late to realize
Glad you did!
Great post

Happy to come back to you again!
and thank you so much for always coming by!
Lots of love
and happy happy weekend
;)

Roxy said...

This is heart warming, Sarah. We never know the true impact of our kindness upon others. What a blessing they were to you... and I'm so happy that you had them to depend on. God bless you...great post!

Margie said...

Dear Sarah
The kind people that were so good to you were such special and wonderful people!

I have met many kind people in my life who give of themselves and want nothing in return.
I believe those people are true angels!

Your post touched my heart so much and I so appreciate your sharing it!

It's so wonderful that you want to live your life paying forward the kindness given to you!
You too are an angel!!!

God's blessings on you, always!

Margie:)
xx

Finally Free said...

Sarah,
This is such a timely post. Dr. T. did that for me. No expectations, No pressure, just acceptance and love.

I want to honor him by paying it forward, too.
Thanks for sharing. It is good for me to be able to write about him right now.
Thanks for always supporting and encouraging me. It means alot, especially now. :)

Hugs to you,
Tammy

Madison said...

This is a reminder that sometimes the smallest gestures are never forgotten.

Being Me said...

Wow this was lovely to read and feel..

BM

Prayer Girl said...

What beautiful descriptions of your personal encounters with "God in skin".

PG

Denise said...

Thank you for the kindness you shared with me and my husband, love you.

Kelly L said...

Seeing the kindness of others gives us a glimpse of His love. Beautiful and very moving post.

Love to you.
Kelly
http://www.amazingsalvation.com

Ellen said...

Hi Sarah,

I like this line very much "...the kindness that made a difference." And I like your blog. Thank you for writing the way you do. Blessings of peace and joy to you.

Also, thanks for visiting my blog. A lovely surprise it was! :-)

Ellen

Just Be Real said...

Sarah, a perfect reminder all around. Thank you for touching our hearts. Blessings.

Deb said...

Kindness.

So simple.

Is the difference between giving up and keeping on.

You kept going.

They knew that they were making a difference.

And every time you write, you pay their kindness forward.

Your words reach out to me. Grab my heart and my attention.

Funny, how you write in the dark, but your words are wrapped up in hope. And light.

Sweet dreams.

Kristen Torres-Toro said...

It really does. I completely understand. I've had moments where I've been so overcome by others' kindness. It means the world.

Just_because_today said...

being aware of what they did, acknowledging their kindness is enough payment.