Halloween is near and along with the costumes, parties, and pumpkin carving comes the tradition of “Trick or Treating.” As children go door to door singing the verse, they usually get a “treat” as no-one likes to be “tricked.”
As we reflect on this custom, it is really about our options in life to be kind or to be crude. In our daily roles, do we make it a habit to be generous to one another or do we focus our energies on being mean?
Think about the office gossip, the negative comments said about co-workers, the blaming of others when things go wrong, and complaints about “the boss.” Now think about what is happening in our schools. Everyday approximately 160,000 students skip school because they are afraid. They fear rejection, being safe and being bullied.
Schools across the nation have started to adopt the Rachel Challenge. Named after Rachel Joy Scott, the first person killed in the Columbine HS tragedy in 1999, it is a program about teaching children on how to be kind. Immediately after the tragedy, Darrell, her father began to speak and used writings and drawings from Rachel’s diaries to illustrate the need for a kinder, more compassionate nation. (http://www.rachelschallenge.org/educators).
In our daily interactions with others what do we focus on? Do we concentrate on the good or do we set our sights on the bad or what makes them different?
This week at a training program, I met the nicest waitress. By her age I could tell she has been in this industry a long time, serving as a banquet host. You could tell she loved her job and loved helping people. After the program I thanked her profusely and let her know that she was one of the kindest persons I have met at a hotel and was thankful for her service. She got tears in her eyes, gave me a hug and said, “You have made my day! Thank you! Thank you!”
My challenge to you today is to make it a habit of being kind, to those you know well and those you don’t. In the words of one very smart girl who is no longer on this earth, “I have this theory that if one person can go out of their way to show compassion, then it will start a chain reaction of the same. People will never know how far a little kindness can go.” Rachel Joy Scott, 1981 – 1999.