I inhale deeply, taking in the perforating scent of freshly ground coffee beans, punctuated by the smells of cologne, hairspray and someones perfume from behind me.
They aren’t entirely unpleasant smells, but they are sharp; contrasting the warmth of the traditional coffee smell, rich and deep.
A city of cobwebs and wires span across the ceiling, below it, the people bustle.
Behind the words and name-calling of the coffee shop, I can hear music playing, softly, rhythmically, in the background; floating above us..
This place is filled with culture and stories: the girl meeting with her mentors, the young couple stealing kisses while in the que, the loner, the old man with his newspaper and quiet observance.
The couple by the widow in sincere topic, the young men in debate over their bibles.
The boy whose head just brushes the top of the doorway. The beautiful girl in glasses who looks like she walked out of a novel… the barista hugging her mom, both nearly in tears.
The middle aged couple whose eyes are twinkling like they carry the secret to happiness-the ones that you know have been together for a while.
All these faces, like road maps, each leading to an incredible story. People. fascinating, beautiful, people. So perfectly created in Abba’s design.
No wonder God delights so much in us, have you ever stopped to watch your own kind?
I mean, think about it, seven. billion. people. Each one perfectly and uniquely crafted by Father God. Each with a purpose and each with a story.
How many hundreds of people do we interact with each day? How many of those people do we have the opportunity to affect for the better each day?
A kind word, a quiet smile. And perhaps that ispart of out purpose; to simply interact with love to people… maybe the greatest ministry a person can have is the ministry of kindness.
Kindness overcomes boarders and language barriers. It crosses mountains and seas, affecting lives with a potential we could never realize.
I think this was a best articulated by the great Apostle Paul when he wrote to the Greek at Corinth in what would become one of his most famous letters, saying:
“Though I speak with the tongues and understanding of men and angels, but have not love to others,, I become as an annoying sound. If I have the great faith that moves mountains, but don’t extend love, then I become nothing; to not have love does me no merit at all.
“Love is what endures with patience and serenity. Love is kindness and thoughtfulness; it is not jealousy or envy. It is not boisterous or arrogant, it is not rude or self-seeking.
“Love does not take delight at injustice or wrong-doing, but rejoices when goodness and truth prevail.
“Love bears through all things, love believes for all things, remaining steadfast; Love endures all things with grace.
“Understanding and enlightenment will fade, languages will cease, yet still there will remain these three things: Faith, Hope and Love.
“But the greatest of these things is and will always be LOVE.”
- 1 Corinth 13.1-13 (paraphrased and abbreviated)
Sometimes we may not be able to do much, or donate much. not everyone has the opportunity to dig wells in Haiti, or donate to a foundation for homeless kids; but every single one of us has the opportunity to be kind.
We can let our words and small actions change a persons day, and it costs us little to nothing.
Take some time today to impact someone around you, a friend, a stranger, or maybe the overworked nurse at the hospital, with a little bit of kindness.
Who knows? It may be the very thing they need that day.