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Do Something Kind for Someone Else

Feb 10, 2023

Every week in Elementary Chapel, Ms. Fitcher closes with the encouragement to “do something kind for someone else.” This year, I even made a vinyl quote with those words that are now hanging in the cafeteria for our students to see each day. It goes so well with this year’s theme of “Build Each Other Up.”

I know that I’ve expressed frustration when I run for the U-bahn and the door slams in my face (especially if I had to run up the stairs). I tend to take it personally, even though I know that the trains must run on an exact schedule. Last week, I was privileged to witness a wonderful display of caring for others. I was in the bus that heads toward my apartment. There was a young family with a child in a stroller. I happened to notice that he didn’t have any shoes on. I remember thinking that it was pretty cold out, but figured he could put his feet inside his snowsuit when they got off the bus.

Well, a couple of stops later, the family exited the bus, and the bus driver pulled out. Just then, a man now standing where the stroller had been minutes before looked down and saw one small shoe. Of course, it belonged to the toddler in the stroller. He picked it up and ran to the front of the bus, explaining to the driver that the child had lost his shoe. The bus driver honked his horn to get the parents’ attention, pulled the bus over, and proceeded to pass the shoe to the boy’s father through the open door. That one act of kindness spared the family the trouble of looking everywhere for his shoe and saved them the expense of purchasing a new pair. No one in the bus minded the short stop to help this young family. I’m sure we could all relate to misplacing something like that.

Well, this morning, as we were exiting the bus at Kaisermuehlen, I followed the protocol that we use when disembarking from an airplane. I normally wait and allow those passengers closest to the door to exit first. Everyone got out except for one man who had his head buried in his phone. My husband and I walked by him and were at the exit door when he got up and headed into the aisle. I happened to notice that he was not really paying attention, but was engrossed in what he was reading. There on the seat next to him were his gloves. I had a feeling that he did not remember that he had them. As I am still not very confident with my German, I simply tapped him on the shoulder and pointed to his gloves. He responded with, “Danke,” and then he must have recognized us from our travels back and forth on the bus. He immediately switched to English, with a delightful British accent. We laughed and wished each other a nice day.

“Do something kind for someone else.” It takes so little effort, and yet the result can really make a difference. It can be the encouragement that someone needs at that very moment. It can make someone’s day start with a smile instead of apprehension or sadness for what will meet them when they get to work. Just as we encourage our youngest students each week, I want to remind us all that being kind to those we meet each day is a way of showing God’s love for them. In the Bible, there are many verses that instruct us to be kind to one another, and even to strangers. As we are at the beginning of our second semester, let’s revisit our theme for the year: “Encourage one another, and build each other up.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

Because of His Faithfulness,
Dr. Sharon Brobst. Director