Pay it backwards


I am not a frequent visitor to our local Tim Horton’s coffee shop. I have my favorite Hazelnut Vanilla coffee beans that I grind daily so my house can be infused by the rich fragrance of my morning java, but lately that has changed.

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been visiting Tim’s more often than I usually do and each time I have gone, I have paid for the order for the car behind me in line. It’s like a Pay It Forward, but in reverse. Some days, it’s as simple as one coffee. Other days, it has been an order of six coffees and donuts for a work crew. Regardless of the size of the order, I drive away with a smile knowing the person in the vehicle behind me is most likely smiling as well.

Simple acts of kindness have a ripple effect. This post is not being written to pat myself on the back for doing a good deed. In light of all the anger and arguing on social media about current events, this simple gesture helps bring back a sense of peace to my brain. It makes me forget the ugliness in the world and focus on small ways to inject a bit of happiness into someone else’s day.

Jennifer Dukes Lee summed it up best when she said, “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”


Every time a bell rings


With all of the negativity that has been thrown haphazardly around the myriad of social media, the timing of our 3rd Annual Toy Drive at the lodge couldn’t have come at a better time for me.

For anyone who has ever done anything nice for someone, you know what an astounding feeling of satisfaction you get knowing that you made a difference or at least made someone smile.  Random acts of kindness, whether large or small, create a ripple effect that we need to send back into this world.

I’ve written before about “paying it forward”.  It is a concept I truly believe in and one this Earth could really use right now.  You may think that buying someone in the line behind you at the drive-thru a simple cup of coffee may seem like nothing, but that person may turn around and donate $50.00 to a charity that may help a family have a real turkey dinner at Christmas.  For each kind wave sent into this world, the ripple of that kindness swells into bigger rings on the pond of our life.

I took our first few monetary donations into a local shop and bought the first toys for our Toy Drive today.  It made me feel happy and it made me feel hopeful.  That spirit of giving still exists within each one of us.  Whether it is a donation for a charity or merely a kind word to someone who could use a smile, kindness begets kindness.

It is easy to lose sight of the simple niceties with all the fear and anger being broadcast on every news station around the world.  It is understandable that our anxiety and apprehension are clouding our vision and not allowing us to remember the kindness we have been raised to feel and to share.  I am thankful that I have been made aware that tolerance and humanity still exist and I am extremely grateful that I continue to comfortably tread water in the sea of optimism.

(image credit)

I am reminded of the line from ‘It’s A Wonderful Life” ~ every time a bell rings, an Angel gets its wings.  Perhaps we can bring that thought process down from such an ethereal level and just hope that every time a kind act is performed, a small piece of hatred dies.


Pay It Forward


I just watched the movie of the same name again with a young Haley Joel Osment and was as overwhelmed with the movie today as I was when it first came out.  What a concept.  For those of you that have not seen the movie, I highly recommend it – and for those of you that have seen it, watch it again.

A young boy’s social studies assignment is to come up with a concept that could change the whole world and to put it into action.  His idea is so simple, yet so possible.  It begins with one good deed done for three separate people.   Instead of that favor being repaid, the favor is paid forward to three other unsuspecting, but deserving people.  The ripple effect of such a simple gesture could be remarkable!

The trajectory of human existence could be put into a whole new orbit.  The onus is on you to start the ripple – the rest is putting your faith in others to continue the journey that you began.  Imagine if the human race could single-handedly make the world a better place to live by putting our faith in each other and believing that such a small gesture could make such a vast difference.

It is certainly worth pondering for more than just a fleeting second.  What if the favor you bestow on someone today could start that ripple?  Kindness begets kindness…what we sow, so shall we reap.  But what if we let others reap what we have sown, and pass on that kindness to someone you may never cross paths with?

Pay it forward.  Impart your generosity to someone less fortunate with only one covenant.  They need not pay you for the kindness you have shown them.  Ask them instead to look favorably on someone else in need of that same benevolence that you have shared. The world can seem like an unfriendly and threatening place, but if we could change the outlook on life for three people and they, in turn, do the same, perhaps we can make a difference and make our world a much better place.