February 17 is Random Acts of Kindness Day. It’s a day to encourage people of all ages to make kindness the norm through simple acts of love and care.
Kindness is free and contagious. In fact, the beauty of a random act of kindness is that it doesn’t cost us anything. We don’t run out of kindness once we’ve done too many kind acts. And, it often works the opposite way. Performing random acts of kindness can encourage us and others to do so more often and make it a way of life.
When an act of kindness is random, it can happen in a moment. If we open our eyes and ears, we will find random opportunities to be kind. Listening for what someone is struggling with and being eager to help them will open lots of new doors. If we seek opportunities to be kind, the Lord will put them in our path.
There are simple acts of kindness that can go a long way, especially for foster families that could use support. Here are some ways that your family can be kind.
How Kids Can Do Random Acts of Kindness
Children are often the most talented when it comes to random acts of kindness. They will give hugs, draw pictures, hold our hands and tell us that they love us without hesitation. They don’t even realize how much those tender gestures mean specifically to families in foster care, and they don’t need to. Their kindness continues regardless. Teaching our children to be kind may simply mean giving them the space and encouragement to be a child. They can learn kindness from us, but we can probably learn from them, too.
For those of us who are parents, a good place to start can be simply involving our children in our own random acts of kindness. If we’re making a meal for a foster family, our children can be involved in the cooking and the delivery of the meal. If we’re writing a note to encourage a foster parent, our children can write a note too or sign their name. This is a great way for them to learn by example and experience the joy of giving.
How Teens Can Do Random Acts of Kindness
Older children and teenagers can offer help to foster families by:
- Bringing coffee to a foster parent
- Giving a gift to a teacher of a child in foster care
- Doing yard work for a foster family
- Spending time with a child in foster care
Also, a teenager may not be at a place where they can offer babysitting, but spending time playing with a child in foster care not only encourages the child, it allows a foster parent some time to relax or complete house chores that they haven’t been able to.
How Families Can Be Kind Together
A random act of kindness does not have to be elaborate or time-consuming to be impactful. Kindness for people involved in foster care can be as simple as:
- Cooking an extra portion of dinner
- Listening and being an encourager over coffee
- Giving them a gift card
- Asking a foster parent what they need from the grocery store while you’re there
The greatest kindness we can offer those involved in foster care is support. Through our actions, we have the power to not only make kindness the norm, but to make support of those involved in foster care the norm as well.
We never know the impact that kind words or actions can have on someone. Our act of kindness may feel small to us, but we are working hand in hand with the Holy Spirit. Our small act could go a long way for someone who is going through a tough time, or simply needs some encouragement.
An act of kindness may feel random to those receiving it, but it doesn’t have to be a random event to us. Reframing our minds to do these simple gestures often will make us habitually kind. We don’t have to wait for random act of kindness day to take action. We can make random acts of kindness a way of life.