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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

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LIFE MATTERS: Kindness

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By Dr. Dencio Acop

Nothing beats kindness. After everything is said and done. No matter how much we achieve. With all that go on in the world. At the end of the day, it is that little gesture that tugged at some recipient’s heart that makes all the difference. It may have been giving a coin to a beggar everyone ignored. Or talking nicely to people without being rude. Visiting an old relative or friend who is now alone in life. Taking care of a loved one without complaining. Stopping for pedestrians on the road. Letting go and not cussing a reckless motorist. Not ignoring people even when they ignore you. Standing up for people who cannot stand up for themselves. Giving what little we can to people who ask for our help. Always being there for the people we care about. And when we are overwhelmed, always praying for those we can’t help. To our Heavenly Father who can do all things.

Kindness is needed by all. We are all needy in some way or form. Because we are imperfect and broken, some more than others. And our neediness comes both tangibly and intangibly. I once knew of a mother who would intimate to a soul how grateful she was to a daughter who took care of her being ill and all. But she always got hurt by the harsh words of her daughter who probably felt entitled because she did take care of her. Thus, it was almost like she took back with her words whatever kindness she gave with her deeds. Happy are those who, broken as they are, spare others their brokenness. There was also a man who once told his brother’s son that he would come to his wedding but never did. Thus, the kindness of the brother the son and his father felt initially soon turned into sorrow because the brother’s absence from such an important event broke their hearts. Time is one of the most precious of gifts because it is something that can no longer be undone.

We are all given a lifetime to show kindness. Naturally, it is easy to show kindness to the people we know. Not so easy to do with those we don’t. But Christ teaches that we are in all essence just one. Humanity is one. Created in the image and likeness of God. With the same dignity. Rich or poor. Weak or strong. Dumb or smart. Healthy or ill. And we are supposed to take care of each other. Uplift each other. Leave no one behind. As St Mother Teresa said, we need not feed the entire world if we can only feed one. But if each one of us fed even just one, then none in the world would go hungry. In kindness are compassion and empathy. The lives of the saints especially St Mother Teresa of Calcutta and St
Mother Cabrini epitomized this compassionate kindness. For her part, Frances Cabrini always told her nuns that ‘a small gesture of love can change the world’. And with her determined efforts, the hospitals and orphanages she inspired spread throughout all parts of the world. Kindness is the tiniest little force the world needs. It is easy. It is free. Anyone can do it. We only need to think of the other more than ourself. We only need to give more than take. We only need to live more with our heart.
And when our work on earth is done, may it be said ‘well done, be thou at peace’. At the end of it all, our life is eventually measured by how much of it was given away.

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