This I Believe

Chris - Deephaven, Minnesota
Entered on October 2, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
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I Believe in Committing Acts of Kindness

It occurred to me a few months ago while I was on the roof of a house I was building through the Wayzata Community Church, south of Tijuana, Mexico; “I’m doing a great thing for this family.” It hit me square in the face, causing me to stop myself from nailing the boards into the cross beams below. “This is a great deed of kindness I am committing.”

When I signed up for the service trip with three great friends of mine, I saw the trip as a week away from the chaos of my summer athletics, and as a time away from school where I could relax and not have to worry about grades and gossip. It was a time where I could just enjoy life. But when I got on top of the roof on the fourth day, and saw what we had accomplished, and what the other groups across the road on the other hill had accomplished, I felt good about myself.

Some people think that acts of kindness are good things, but that they are done as a self sacrifice, for the person who receiving the act of kindness, and not for themselves. But acts of kindness not only benefit the receiver, but the giver also.

Everyday, I attempt to do little acts of kindness, in an attempt to make someone feel better and in reward, receive the feeling that I have made someone’s day a little easier. Anything from holding the door open, to helping others with their books, or helping others find a class. It is these little acts of kindness that I attempt to do everyday, but with the addition of a once a week service through my school, I am able to reach out even further, and not only touch the lives of fellow classmates and teachers, but I am able to achieve greater acts of kindness by helping young children at Head Start, or play with children who have siblings receiving care at the Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis. I even had the opportunity last year to run bingo every Wednesday morning at a Nursing Home about 6 blocks from my high school campus. When we arrived on the 4th floor with our cart, which contained the boards, number roller, and prizes, the residents of the nursing home would already be at tables, ready to indulge themselves for two hours in fun.

Looking back at the acts of kindness I have committed throughout my l, I felt good about myself; I was enjoying my act of good will, because I knew that at the end of the day, I was giving a family a new roof to live under, and at that moment, nothing could be a greater gift and act of kindness in my mind.