Category: Uncategorized

Maxwell’s Soap Winner

Thank you all for entering and sharing! I turned to random.org to choose our winner. And the lucky comment is …

#6! “People making a difference ROCK!!! I shared on my FB page!”

Congratulations, Holly! Please e-mail me your address at [email protected], and I’ll pass it on to the awesome team at Maxwell’s Soaps.

For those of you who have not already checked it out, I’d love for you to take a look at our Kindness Matters Monday post and to learn a little bit about the awesome work that Maxwell’s soaps is doing for veterans and for the homeless in San Francisco. I love to see people who have big hearts and big dreams – and who then go and do something to change the world! And if you have it in your budget do donate a few dollars (or to donate $20, so you can try out some of the awesome shirt for yourself), that would be fantastic!

I did. And let me tell you what. It absolutely made my day.

Thanks, y’all!

 

Kindness Matters Monday: One Last Walk

When I stumbled across this picture on Facebook, I knew that I needed to share it with you for today’s Kindness Matters Monday post.

A hospice patient (a former forest ranger) who just wanted one last walk through the woods.

And the firemen who were his heroes.

And now, mine.

Take a look.

Oh, friends. Kindness matters.

Kindness Matters Monday

Kindness Matters Monday – LoveLoud

I am so thankful to Linda, who shared this heartwarming story with us on our Facebook page, and who gave me permission to share it with all of you as today’s Kindness Matters Monday post!

Kindness Matters Monday

“Every October, our church takes a weekend to help the community. We call it LoveLoud (Action speaks louder than words). Anyone, anything, anywhere help is needed. They give haircuts, small dental work, car washes, oil changes, clean yards, treat local firefighters, police, other community professionals to a meal, go to nursing homes, hospitals, many more things I can’t even remember. You know the bible verse about helping widows and orphans. Well, I don’t fit either category, but I am unmarried with no children. In 2013, a mess of men came to my house and worked from sunup to sundown for 2 days cleaning my yard, laying new mulch, trimming trees, cutting grass and other lawn care tasks. They replaced all my gutters, did inside small carpentry jobs and left me feeling like a queen!”

Thanks, Linda, for the wonderful story, and for the positive comments you often leave on our Facebook page – you truly make our online community a better place, and I am thankful for you! And thank you for getting us motivated for this week’s 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge!

See you soon!

Hello, my ‘Do Some Good Today’ friends! I just wanted to let y’all know that I’m taking two weeks off of blogging. I’m excited to have some time to rest and to be with my family – and I’ve got a few fun things to share with you when I come back, so stick around!

One question for you in the meantime: do you have any service challenges that you’d like to suggest to the group? We’ve done all kinds of things I’m passionate about (from helping the homeless to thanking soldiers to helping people with disabilities). What ideas do YOU have for me? I’d love to hear them! Please feel free to comment here, or to e-mail me at [email protected] And if you have a submission for a Kindness Matters Monday post, I’d love to hear that as well!

Thank you all, so much, for ‘doing good’ with me.

Kindness Matters Monday: “You Will Stay With Us”

Today’s Kindness Matters Monday post is written by my cousin Blake. He and his wife have recently begun a brave new blogging adventure at Couples Against Pornography. As a wife and as a mother, I am so grateful for the work that they are doing. You can check out their website here (or connect with them on Facebook).

Kindness Matters Monday

“You will stay with us.”  These five little words perfectly sum up how my friend Janet lives her life.  Always looking for an opportunity to help others, she later told me helping is how she expresses her faith. Janet is quick with a kind word or an offer of help.  Her kindness to me—an offer to stay with her family while I looked for housing—came on the very first day I met her.

I had just completed a cross-country move to a city where I had never been before and where I knew no one.  With my wife and two kids a week behind me, and with two cats living with me in the car, I needed to find housing, and I needed to find it fast.  Our new hometown had a booming population with a severe housing shortage, which meant decent places to live were expensive and gone in a heartbeat.  I had little time and little money to make it all work.

I began training for my new job the morning after I arrived in town.  At the end of the day I snagged some lunch leftovers and had a picnic outside by myself.  I was not quite sure where to go or what to do.  Having two cats with me had made finding a cheap place to stay quite difficult, and we simply didn’t have money for an extended stay in a hotel.

After eating, I set off to find a trashcan.  And I ran straight into Janet and her friends.  We ran through the normal getting-to-know-you conversation and I mentioned that I was looking for a cat-friendly hotel where I could stay while searching for housing.  Janet didn’t hesitate: “You will stay with us,” she said.  She wouldn’t take any answer but yes.  She took me home right then to meet her husband and teenage son.

I stayed with Janet’s family for a whole week.  They treated me like one of their own.  We had meals together, sat on the porch and talked together, and even worked on their farm together (I wasn’t about to sit around and not reciprocate their generosity).  Janet did not hesitate to show immediate kindness to a stranger.  Her kindness truly did matter to me, in a huge way.  She saw a need and filled it, and in so doing not only saved me a lot of money, but also taught me the importance of doing what we can for others.  In the end, I think her giving me a place to sleep was less impactful than the attitude with which she did it: with a warm hug a big smile on her face.  Something we can all emulate.

-Blake, author at couplesagainstpornography.org

Have I Done Any Good?

This song (and this video) just make me want to go out and change the world.

Or at least, change someone’s day.

Enjoy!

Let’s Get Upset Together

This week, my family had the opportunity to visit a “Compassion: Change the Story” presentation. If you’ve never heard of it (I hadn’t either), here’s a little summary for you: Compassion International has a traveling exhibit. As you walk through the guided tour, you see replicas of the homes of children living in poverty. And even more significantly, you listen to the words and stories of children who have been sponsored through Compassion. You see and hear the heartbreak and despair. And then you feel the hope and the change that sponsorship brought them.

It was remarkable.

(I’ll share more details of the experience with you at another time. But one story at a time.)

As we drove to the exhibit, I wanted to prepare my children for what they’d be seeing. We talked about our sponsored boys and about the poverty they live in. We talked about our home and about how it compares to the homes of so many others in the world.

And then, from the mouth of my children, came heart-stopping questions.

“Mom … why did Heavenly Father and Jesus give some people such little houses and not enough food?”

“Yeah, why?”

“Why, Mom?”

“Mom?”

” … Mom?”

My heart was in my throat. My brain was in overdrive. For a moment, I had no idea how to answer. Because honestly, I have struggled with these same thoughts. I have looked at the injustices in the world and have wept at the unfair hand that some people seem to have been dealt. As I fought tears, my mind flew through many possible answers. Finally, I opened my mouth and began to speak from my heart. Haltingly at first, but with increasing confidence as I spoke, the words came.

“Guys, everyone is born and … Well, everyone has things in their life that are sad and hard. For some people, they have a hard time because they don’t have enough for money to buy things. They don’t have a nice house, or very much food. Some people don’t have a job. Some people’s bodies have lots of ouchies, and that’s very hard. And it’s very sad.

“But you know what, guys? Some people, like us, are so lucky. We have enough food to eat. We have a house we can live in. And we are SO lucky that we even have some extra money. So here’s what I think. I think that we can all help each other. And if we have more than what we need, we should choose to share. Because we can change people’s lives. We can help fix their problems.”

We continued to have a wonderful talk about the work that Compassion is doing for our sponsored children. I pulled up a scripture on my phone and we had a wonderful discussion. By the end of the conversation, my children no longer seemed upset.

But I still am.

I am upset.

I am upset that there are women who believe they only have two options: sell their body, or starve.

I am upset that there are children who do not go to school because they are so hungry that they choose to spend their day in the dump, hoping to find something edible.

I am upset that there are young adults who have no vision of a future that do not involve gangs and violence.

Many things make me upset.

And do you know what?

I hope they make you upset, too.

I don’t want to be upset all of the time, and I don’t want you to be upset all of the time. I don’t even want us to be upset most of the time. I believe that life is largely what we make of it, and I try to seek things that are good and lovely and uplifting. I am trying to teach my children to count their blessings and to look at the positive side of life. I believe the world is full of wonderful people who are trying hard to live good lives. I hope you feel the same way.

But sometimes, we need our lives to be shaken up a little bit. As we sit in our comfortable homes, near our kitchens full of food, we need to realize that there are many, many, many people who desperately need help. Right at this moment.

Sometimes, we should be so upset that we just can’t sit still any longer. We should feel so passionate that we decide that even if it means we have to skip lunch, we will donate a dollar to feed someone who is hungry. This passion should fuel us to find our local abused women’s shelter and ask what they need right now.

This unsettled feeling in our heart should push us to seek out organizations that serve refugees, fight against sex slavery, or educate those in poverty. We should be calling our city’s soup kitchen and finding out what their empty shelves need right this minute. We should quietly search our hearts, find a cause that speaks to us, and do something – even something tiny – to help. And then we should open our mouth to advocate for that cause.

Because if you have a computer or a phone with internet access, and you’re reading this right now, I’m guessing you are like me. You have enough to keep you alive … and you probably have a little bit to share.

Let’s get upset together.

And then let’s do something.

Let's get upset together