Two particular details have stuck in my mind.
First, while at Kripalu, I saw a t-shirt with this on it: “Love all, serve all.”
Second, I’ve always remembered reading about Thomas White. A very wealthy man, once he took care of his family, he vowed to die penniless and give away his remaining wealth.
He helped start Partners in Health, which focuses on Haiti. But, he also did the little things. Here is a quote from a Boston Globe article (here):
And Mr. White contributed to dozens of other charities, nudging a seemingly endless stream of lives in new directions simply by keeping a wad of bills in his pocket. He would slip a $20 bill to the employee cleaning toilets at McDonald’s. Once, a homeless woman in Harvard Square told him her life would be better if she had a red wagon to cart redeemable bottles. She burst into tears the next day when he showed up pulling a red wagon.
I’m no Tom White. I don’t think I have the courage to do what he did. But, I’ve started to do some “random acts of kindness” regarding weddings. Let me explain.
In my fly fishing forays, I’ve gotten to know quite a few people, many of whom are young guys. When I heard that three of them were getting married, I went online, found the gift registries and sent wedding gifts.
You won’t believe the surprised and grateful messages I’ve received. And, I’m glad to give the gifts.
You see, I still remember well our wedding day, how so many people traveled from around the globe to be there. I had relatives fly in from Indonesia, for example. I also remember the Crate & Barrel gifts that people sent off our registry, many of which we still use every day. I remember one of Mrs. T’s uncles gave three gifts from the registry. Unfortunately, we still remember the couple who came with their two toddlers (children were not invited), let them run around, and forgot to give a gift.
Powered by those memories, I feel motivated to add a dose of joy to a young couple’s life. I remember all too well how tight our budget was back then, and how every dollar really mattered to us.
So, I share this because it is summer wedding season, I just got a thank-you DM a few minutes ago, and want to pose the question: Do you feel called to do random acts of kindness, and, if so, what might one be?