a random act of kindness

I always love hearing stories about random acts of kindness done by strangers.  Last week I was lucky enough to hear two stories that prove just how awesome people can be.  You might need a tissue for this post…

The first story happened here in good ole Washington.  Oak Harbor, home of NAS Whidbey Island, has an award-winning barbeque restaurant called The BBQ Joint.  Only a few miles from base, this local gem attracts sailors quite regularly with its seriously delicious southern barbeque goodness.  According to their FB page, a mystery woman came in a couple weeks ago and paid for the lunches of a couple of sailors.  Last week, her generosity struck again as she came in to buy a meal for anyone in uniform!  *Sigh*

The next story happened to a woman I “met” through a FB page for the book Faith Deployed: Daily Encouragement for Military Wives.  While we haven’t actually met in person, we’ve regularly turned to each other for comfort and words of wisdom as we go through the difficulties this life can bring.  She’s an incredibly courageous & faithful woman, and is a lot stronger than she realizes when it comes to this crazy world of deployments and separation.  This story, in her own words, was so touching that I couldn’t help but cry a bit as I read it in my cubicle at work.  Thanks Angela for letting me share your story…

My husband is currently a 2nd LT in the Army National Guard in South Carolina.  He and I have been preparing for his upcoming deployment for some time now as he has been gone from our home since 09/23/2011 doing much training and is now completing his mobilization prior to deployment.  On the day my husband was leaving for MOB and I was leaving to head back to Kansas, we shared an amazing and life changing experience with a complete stranger. On our way to drop off my handsome solider we decided to stop for breakfast. Not something I had originally planned as I was getting ready to endure a 21 hour drive back home, but I never deny an opportunity to share a meal with my husband.  We decided on Chick-A-Filet after hovering between that and Huddle House.   After placing our order I went to grab my debit card when a young man walked up behind my husband & I, and handed his card to the cashier. At that time he insisted on paying for our meal, he shook my husband’s hand and thanked him for his service for our country and for doing something that even he was not willing to do. My eyes began to water, and I felt so PROUD of my husband, for after watching him the days before with his soldiers, I TRULY realized why my husband has to go, he truly respects and cares for those young men and they need him.  I stood there in amazement, thinking to myself, what perfect timing for a blessing from a complete stranger. As we went to sit down, we walked by the young man’s table, once again my husband thanked him again for buying breakfast, and I couldn’t help but tell the man how TOUCHED I was by his reaching out and blessing us, because my husband was actually leaving that night and we were unsure of when or if we would get to see again before he deployed. Unknowing that my husband was actually preparing for deployment before, the man then gave my husband “well wishes for a safe return”, once we sat down and started to eat, the man walked by once more thanking my husband again as he handed him a note on the back of his receipt and told him too please read it later. After he left, and we ate a bit, when my husband pulled out the note and read it. We were ALL truly touched by this young man’s Godly, inspiring words to my husband which included a glorifying bible verse. He truly enriched our last few moments that we were sharing together as a family, something I will never forget. This one man has now touched and blessed our lives. My husband has decided he will keep that receipt with this man’s words with him as he prepares to leave and while he is away. I AM SO PROUD of my husband; I truly feel so much more at peace with him leaving knowing that he is doing EXACTLY what God needs him to do.

I sincerely hope you were as moved by these stories as I was.  They are such great reminders of how easily we can influence the lives of others in such a profound and positive way.  No matter how big or small, never forget the power of a random act of kindness! 

What can you do to put a smile on someones face this week?

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