I read a book called Random Acts of Kindness. It contains quotes and stories from many different authors and sources. The foreword was written by Daphne Rose Kingma. This touched my heart so much, I just had to share it with you in its entirety.
To Become an Angel by Daphne Rose Kingma
Random acts of kindness are those little sweet or grand lovely things we do for no reason except that, momentarily, the best of our humanity has sprung, exquisitely, into full bloom. When you spontaneously give an old woman the bouquet of red carnations you had meant to take home to your own dinner table, when you give your lunch to the guitar-playing beggar who makes music at the corner between your two subway stops, when you anonymously put coins in someone else’s parking meter because you see the red “Expired” medallion signaling to a meter maid – you are doing not what life requires of you, but what the best of your human soul invites you to do.
Most of us try hard to fulfill our obligations in life, to be responsible parents, to reward and discipline our children, to assist our employees or colleagues, to support and comfort our spouses, to do our share of the work at the office and at home. But these deeds are what we’re expected to do, what in fact we have agreed to do because of the mates we have chosen, the lives we have decided to live. They come, in effect, with the territory. To be reasonable, decent, civilized human beings who maintain the stability of our lives and our relationships, we must and we will do all these ordinary things.
But it is when we step outside the arena of our normal circumstances, when we move beyond the familiar emotional and circumstantial boundaries of our lives that our kindnesses, too, move beyond the routine and enter the realm of the extraordinary and exquisite. Instead of being responsible good deeds they become embodiments of compassion.
To become the perpetrator of random acts of kindness, then, is to become in some sense an angel. For it means you have moved beyond the limits of your daily human condition to touch wings with the divine.
No longer circumscribed by can and must, you have set your soul free to give for the sheer, beautiful sake of true giving. In giving freely, purely, for no reason and every reason, you move into another person’s emotional landscape – not because you must, not because you have no choice, but because in your heart, that majestically superhuman organ, the castle of your love, you have felt the spiritual necessity of acting out your love.
To become the person who behaves in this way is to be twice blessed. For, in enacting these beautiful, spontaneous, wholly gratuitous goodnesses, you transform not only the world, but yourself. The world – embattled, divided, discouraged, bone weary with its dog-eat-dog mentality – becomes newly laced with the sweetness of imaginatively unpremeditated love. Its atmosphere alters. Quietly, almost imperceptibly, because of the little kindnesses that have been unleashed upon it, it will begin to sing.
And you too, will be changed. For in choosing to love not only those whom you have committed yourself to loving, but also those whose names, faces, and true circumstances you will never really know, you will be moved palpably, inescapably into understanding that loving and being loved is the one true human vocation. You will see yourself as an offering, generous, bountiful soul, as well as a needing human being. You will feel connected, centered, received – deeply bonded to the human stream. In giving love, you yourself will understand that we are held in the web of life – and delivered to our divine humanity – by the random acts of kindness, the love, that we give and receive.
I love the way that Daphne describes acts of kindness. I truly believe that love is the most powerful force in existence and when we connect with it through acts of kindness we awaken the angel within us, we draw nearer to our Heavenly Father and bring about the love of God in the life of another person. And in doing this, we expand our capacity to love and be loved. We also open windows within our hearts and our lives allowing God to work more fully and deeply to bring about the very changes and blessings we desire for ourselves.
So take a minute and give gratitude for the angels who have worked acts of kindness in your life and remember how wonderful it felt to receive. And now that you have remembered how wonderful receiving is, go find the angel in you by giving an act of kindness to a soul in need. I invite you to make it a part of your goals to share the love of God through an act of kindness every day.