Good Things Matter

Yesterday, I re-blogged a video of people being told they’re beautiful. Later, I watched another video of a man paying for other people’s groceries at a supermarket cashier’s station. Both were posted on the Kindness Blog yesterday, the day after the San Bernardino massacre, which I wrote about as well.

I ended my post about San Bernardino with one of my favorite songs about despair, Randy Newman’s I Think It’s Going to Rain Today. But then I started thinking about the posts on the Kindness Blog, which got me thinking about another favorite of mine, this one about kindness.

Supporting HandMany of the songs my good friend Andrew McKnight writes have rich tapestries of poetry for lyrics, but Good Things Matter is expressed simply, I guess because there’s nothing complicated about doing good.

We never know what impact we’ll have with what may seem to us like a small kindness. For some people in the videos I mentioned, being told they’re beautiful or having their groceries paid for meant the world. And one woman decided she’d pay for the groceries of the next person in line.

If we try, we can all probably think of something we did that meant much more to someone else than we dreamed it would, or something done for us that turned out to be an enormous gift.

I did something small a few years ago. I paid $100 and spit dozens of times into a tube. I did it to have my DNA analyzed and round out my family tree on, but it led to answered prayers for a man in his 70s whom I had never met. His name is Joe Soll, and I wrote about him in a 2014 sermon. He had been adopted shortly after his birth and lied to about the circumstances. He had given up after 30 years of searching to learn who his mother was.

The short story is that my spit, along with a cousin’s spit in another tube, and my knowledge of my family, gave Joe what he yearned for. He learned who his mother had been, and for the first time had blood relatives. He and I have remained in daily contact for almost two years.

So today I close with a live version of Good Things Matter.

Copyright 2015 © Mel Harkrader Pine

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