The Mister hates it when I start out a conversation like that. :)
Last evening I had a comment about the Random Acts of Kindness
Adventure. The point was that some people might think doing
kind deeds and posting about them is in poor taste and could
be seen as bragging. Kindnesses should be done, but never
publicly talked about. She gave an example of a wealthy friend
who gives a lot of money to charity and would be upset if
that fact were made public. She also pointed out that
the kindness adventure could be misunderstood
as trying to make a deal with God and improving
your chance of getting into heaven by doing good things.
Then I received an email from someone who read her comment
and agreed with her, giving me these two quotes....
"Do what ever you can
when ever you can
where ever you can
for who ever you can
and expect no reward"
"Thou shalt not brag unto others what thou doest
lest they scoff and say unto thee: Big Head".
Both people, who do not live in the USA, said the
Pay-It-Forward and Random Acts of Kindness is an
American thing and both would be considered in poor
taste and bad etiquette to talk about kind things you
have done for others.
If two of my readers could have felt this way,
I imagine there might be even more who remained silent.
So let me just share a few thoughts I have on that subject...
- I think we are talking about two different things here. One is an organized effort to spread kindness and coming here on Fridays to share and inspire each other. The other, would be in poor taste, telling how much money you gave a charity, how much you put in the offering plate at church ...most money subjects like that are off limits, just like you shouldn't tell how much money you make, what you paid for your car, etc.
- Nobody is expecting any kind of reward. Just the blessing of giving.
- I have never gotten the feeling while investigating how to do this adventure on blogs or on facebook, or even here with participants, that we were prideful in the little things we did. Honestly, giving a handful of chocolates to the mail man is hardly worth bragging about, in my opinion. I think it's all in the motive and our attitude. And I think we are to share what we do~
"Let us consider how we may spur one another
on to love and good deeds." Hebrews 10:24
- I do not believe that doing good things gets you to heaven. We do good deeds because we are Christians...not to become Christians.
"For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to
do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
- If we only did good things in secret, how would our children and others learn from our example? Jesus certainly did many good things publicly and we are to imitate him, right? And I believe we are supposed to shine love as a light all around us.
"No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be
hidden, or under a bowl. Instead, they put it on it's stand,
so that those who come in may see the light...in the same
way, let your light shine before others, that they may see
your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
Luke 11:33, Matthew 5:16.
I also wanted to let my two friends know that
Pay It Forward and Random Acts of Kindness are
alive and well in Europe! Just do a google search
for "random acts of kindness in europe" or "pay it
forward in europe" and you'll see what I mean.
And the most interesting thing of all is that the
Pay If Forward with a cup of coffee originated
in Naples, Italy over 100 years ago!
It's not American in origin!
"When a person who had a break of good luck
entered a cafe and ordered a cup of coffee,
he didn't pay just for one, but for two cups,
allowing someone less fortunate who
entered later to have a cup of coffee for free.
It's an elegant way to show generosity:
an act of charity in which donors and
recipients never meet each other,
the donor doesn't show off and the
recipient doesn't have to show gratitude."
I hope that at least explains a little better my motives
and intentions in doing this adventure.
It never occurred to me that someone could think
sharing and inspiring each other to spread more
kindness could be seen as prideful.
So, I apologize if you felt that way.
Let's just 'spur one another on to love and
good deeds' like we're supposed to! And you
can't do that if you don't share and talk about it!
If you read all this, thanks for your time. :)
I promise a photo and minimal chatting next post!
Now, I'm off to make dinner and enjoy the big kids
as they come over this evening and visit!