The ASM’s Family Retreat Weekend could aptly be renamed The Weekend of the Perpetually Wet Towel. The kids spend so much time in and out of the pool that the towels never fully dry. The dorms have no dryers, so I take advantage of any and all opportunities to dry their stuff.
The family had taken off for the cafeteria, and I was draping wet towels over an empty bike rack that was getting some great noontime sun. Mike happened by, and I asked him if he was having a good day.
Of course, he said. How can you not have a good day at this place?
His face darkened ever so slightly as he went on.
Well, I suppose, the people we serve probably have lots of reasons to be having a bad day. They face quite a few struggles we’ll never fully understand. I guess that’s why we have to work hard to make sure they can have good days. I think the very least we can do is offer a smile. It’s a nice way to show kindness. My mother taught me, in all ways, to be kind. I think a smile is an outward demonstration of that kindness. That makes it important.
I’ve paraphrased a bit, but only because I was just folding towels, and was not prepared for Wise Words with Mike. There was no preaching, just a thought he wanted to share. What a wonderful lesson. It describes the basics of all human encounters. I have a printout of the quote: BE KINDER THAN NECESSARY, FOR EVERYONE YOU MEET IS FIGHTING SOME KIND OF BATTLE, on my desk.
I wish more people were like Mike, or at least listened to him. We could all use a little more kindness.