Random Acts of Kindness

The young man with eyeglasses too big and mismatched socks under his sandals stood on the median of the busy road this afternoon.  I tried to assess his situation, as I eyed him a few car lengths ahead of me.  I felt sad that such a young man would need to beg on the street.  As I think back, he wasn’t actually begging.  He was simply holding a cardboard sign that said, “Kindness brings karma,” or something like that.

I was in the left hand turn lane and the light had just changed, giving me a green arrow.  Cars moved on ahead of me as I hurriedly scrounged around my purse for a bill of some kind.  I found a dollar, called him over and put it in his hand.  Quickly, before I even knew what was happening he looked at me, gave back the dollar and told me he wasn’t homeless—but thanks for being a kind person.  He stuffed something into my hand along with the dollar bill.  It was a ten dollar bill! On the back of the bill a note was taped that read, “Random Acts Revolution.” IMG_5100

That little event was certainly random and it made my day.  I put this ten dollar bill in my pocket so I could “show and tell” this story to everyone I spent time with today.  This young man’s actions got me thinking… Can a simple act of kindness really begin a revolution?  Our world certainly needs a kindness revolution.  That is not what I usually experience on a typical day in traffic. Certainly, a kindness revolution has to start somewhere.   Why not with a ten dollar bill?  I’ve heard of numerous people purposely doing random acts of kindness and have always been inspired by their deeds—I’ve just never been “all in.”

I began to feel giddy as I thought of ways I could “invest” this ten dollars by “paying it forward.”  I’ve never actually taken a day to specifically focus on “random acts of kindness.”  However, this one young man’s action inspired me to do just that tomorrow.   I could pay for some someone’s groceries, a meal, some coffees, a haircut (yes I’d have to add to the bill.) I will pray about the opportunities and hope the recipients will be likewise inspired to “pay it forward.” IMG_5098

This is not a new idea.  Jesus taught this concept many years ago.  The scriptures are numerous that teach these truths.  One truth is that Jesus went about doing good, and so we will do the same as we follow him.  Secondly, whatever we give because of what we have been given by God—we will be blessed.  We can never outgive God.  Consider these verses:

You know the message God sent to the people of Israel, telling the good news of peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all.You know what has happened throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached– how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.  Acts 10:36-38  

“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.  Matthew 5:14-16

Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”    Luke 6:38  

In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'”    Acts 20:35

I’ll let you know how the day goes, but I’m confident that God will be happy about this plan, and I will be too. If you are so inclined, consider a random act of kindness you could practice today—and do it!  Let Jesus’ example and teaching be your direction and inspiration, praying for opportunities to let others know he is the reason we even know how to give.

As you practice a random act of kindness, feel free to post a comment about the experience.

Share This:


  1. Lori Seavey

    Thanks for sharing!! I can’t wait to hear what you do. ; ).

  2. coeja73

    Wow that’s an amazing experience. That someone would stand on the corner to do that. Wow.

  3. coeja73

    Wow. That is amazing that he would stand on a corner to do that….that dude has a big heart.

  4. btg5885

    Great story and idea. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Bonnye Stare

    My prayer for today is that I’ll be a more giving person and after reading your post, God is really speaking to me. I love your effort. I always try to give to a homeless person I see in our library and from that, we have become friends. Now I pray that more opportunities will be open for me. Our folks were great examples of this generosity.

    • jeanieshaw

      Thanks, Bonnye. You are always encouraging to me. I’ve had such a fun day with this…I, too, pray to be more aware. Love you.

  6. Charlene Glatkowski

    That’s inspiring. How cool to pay that $10 forward — and you already have a hundred times over in your head probably, which makes it kind of fun. I love that. 🙂


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

About Jeanie Shaw

After retiring from forty-five years in full-time ministry, Jeanie Shaw went back to school to earn her master’s and doctorate in spiritual formation and discipleship. She also serves as a certified Christian life coach who loves helping people discover the joy, peace, and purpose that come from finding and following God’s plan for their lives. She has taught classes and workshops all over the world and has written numerous books. She has four grown children, eight grandchildren, and a golden retriever who thinks he is human. When she is not reading, writing, coaching, teaching, or enjoying her family she might be found walking along rivers, learning new lessons about life.

Follow My Blog Via Email

Stay in the Loop, Sign up for New Post Notifications!

Recent Posts