That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; Holding forth the word of life...
Philippians 2:15-16a

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness

This morning I stopped at Tim Horton's for a tea on my way into work, like I do pretty much every morning.  Yes... I like my tea and coffee, and pretty much any hot drink!  And I like Tim Horton's because it's not as expensive as Starbucks.  Not that Starbucks is an option for me anyways... since we don't have one!  We do have this neat little tea place in the mall called the Tea Garden.  They have like 500 different kinds of tea!  I'm not exaggerating!  And they have really good London Fogs.  Yummy :).  That's where I go when I want a treat :).  

Anyhow, I went to a different Tim's this morning than my "usual."  It's a bit closer to my house, but often busier, so that's why I don't typically go there.  Today, I guess I just felt like a change.  This particular Tim's has a short drive-thru, but it's busy! Often the cars line up along the curb on the street.  It's a pretty wide street, so there's lots of room.  However, when I drive there from my house I come from the opposite direction, so I can't just slip in behind the cars along the curb.  I have to make a left turn, and if the line up is really long your car ends up sticking out into the road when you turn.  To avoid this problem you have to wait until the cars go through the line-up, but then more traffic usually comes along, so the line-up never really goes away.  You just end up sitting in the lane with your left hand signal on for a really long time, while the cars behind you get annoyed with you blocking traffic since you can't make your turn.  I'm not sure if you can picture this from my explanation.... I hope so.

Today was no different than any other day.  The cars were lined up along the curb.  I would have to wait to make my left hand turn.  I checked my mirror to see how many cars were behind me.  None.  Well, at least I wouldn't have fists waving at me right away.  Then I noticed a van had left a gap in the line.  He motioned for me to turn in front of him.  How nice is that?!  Someone actually letting another car go in front of them in the Tim Horton's drive-thru line up, when it's super busy!  In my experience people in drive-thrus usually aren't that kind.  In fact, sometimes they even try to cut in front of you.  Especially the busy drive-thrus, and Tim Hortons is ALWAYS busy!

As I sat in front of that van waiting for my turn at the speaker, something inside of me said I should pay for his coffee.  After all, that was really nice of him to let me in.  Then I looked in my mirror and saw he wasn't by himself.  There were four people in that van.  That's like a 7 dollar order!  And who knows, they might order donuts or muffins too.  Did I really want to pay for all that?  It's funny how we try to rationalize away kindness and make excuses for not doing nice things.  That guy could have rationalized not letting me in.  The line was long.  He probably had places to go.  Maybe he was on his break from work and had to be back by a certain time.  Who knows?  Maybe the minute he would loose by letting me go in front of him would make him late for an appointment?  But, the bottom line is he let me in anyways, and that was a kind thing to do.  

I ordered my Earl Grey tea and plain croissant, still trying to rationalize if I should pay for his order or not.  I got up to the window and realized that he was still at the speaker ordering.  Well, that solves that problem.  I can't pay for his order if he's not finished ordering it now can I?  The lady handed me my tea and croissant.  As she gave me my change I noticed the van pull up behind me. In my mind I thought..  Just pay for the guy's coffee Jessica, and stop being so cheap!  Maybe it'll make his day better, like him letting you in line made your day better.  I looked at the lady as I took my change, and told her I wanted to pay for the vehicle behind me.  It felt good to be nice to someone.  I asked her to thank him for letting me in, and then I drove away.  

I don't regret paying for that man's order, even though it was over 7 dollars!  The Bible says Christians are to be kind and loving.  The only thing I regret is that there was really no way for me to give him a gospel tract.  I thought after I could have given one to the lady at the drive-thru window.  She probably would have given it to him, but then maybe she would have said they aren't supposed to do stuff like that.   I hope this man has an opportunity to hear the gospel.  I pray that God would send someone across his path to witness to him. 

My pastor spoke on Sunday about being kind.  He said you have to practice kindness.  It's so true.  I'm thankful God gave me the opportunity to practice some kindness today.  I know it will help me.  Maybe the next time God gives me an opportunity to be kind, I won't spend so much time trying to figure out a way of getting out of it :P.  

And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted... Ephesians 4:32.

(Be sure to scroll down and read my other post from this morning :)

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