A few years ago, I had a special visitor. She came to my office to apply for a teaching job.
I was surprised to see her, but I was also sad for her predicament after she left her teaching post. She became jobless, alone, and lonely.
The fact is, she was my teacher more than twenty years ago. A brilliant person from a premiere school of our country, she taught in the school where I was once her troublesome student. But where no one or very few believed in me, she did.
After almost 18 years, we met again. In my office where I was CEO of a school foundation, I lovingly listened to her painful story when almost everyone abandoned her and like no one believed in her–except me, this time.
All those years of hard work almost went to nothing. It’s like after she was used, she felt useless. But I can’t forget her act of kindness and level of excellence in teaching.
On top of my desk, I reached out for my study Bible and took an old, small piece of 3′ X 3′ paper inserted there. I slowly showed the faded and folded note to her and asked, “Is this handwriting familiar to you?” I pointed to my name written on it.
She felt uplifted and became teary in her eyes as I opened the note. In it was her short handwriting for me. I kept it all these 18 years as part of my precious memories.
“Ma’am, I could not have achieved this far without you. You have been an important part of my life and success. I thank you for believing in me when almost no one else did.”
I consider it as the short note that made a long lasting impact in my life. For more than twenty years now, that small piece of paper is still with me as a huge reminder that one simple act of kindness can lead to a profound impact on one’s soul.
Here are my three simple encouragements for you if you want to make a difference in someone’s life.
1. Be Kind to Anyone.
How would you feel when someone does a simple act of kindness when you least expected it? For me, it’s not about the money, but the priceless value of love.
A person could appear tough, but deep inside they have a tender heart for someone’s utmost best.
So as much as possible, be kind to everyone. But if not, at least be kind to anyone.
Apostle Paul’s encouragement is apt. “Be kind and compassionate to one another.”
2. Believe in the Potentials of Others.
The fact that my former teacher believed in me when very few did, it means a huge difference in life. Most people see the wrong in others, not the right.
Don’t conclude too quickly. You may not see the potentials of everyone immediately but it is worth the joy in seeing the future when someone does emerge successfully with your contribution.
But when you really begin to see what’s good and potential in others then you’ll soon realize that just like you, they have strengths also.
3. Build Up the Best in Others.
By giving your best, you implant seeds for you to harvest in the future. When you deposit something good, you can withdraw something great.
Can you imagine how a former student would react to a ruthless, angry, and insensitive former teacher? Either you build or break their heart, but we do have the power to empower someone else through acts of simple kindness.
You may have already started to notice that you actually do not remember the lessons of your teachers before. But you most likely remember their lives.
Here’s what would happen when you encounter again those teachers you have had a long time ago. Either you remember their kindness or killer attitude.
My friends, take a close look in the past. When was the last time you did a simple act of kindness to someone else?
Please don’t forget. You will reap what you sow. So if you want to reap kindness, give and plant kindness too.
Plant precious seeds of priceless thoughts and actions.
Glenn Plastina © 2017