“One theory says that if you treat people well, you’re more likely to encourage them to do what you want, making all the effort pay off. Do this, get that.
Another one, which I prefer, is that you might consider treating people with kindness merely because you can, regardless of what they choose to do in response; this is what you choose to do. Because you can”.
The above was culled from Seth Godin’s blog and it inspired me to share the story of two people who met ever so randomly and transformed each other’s lives just by their kindness, and that, because they could.
And no, they didn’t get married : )
It was a Thursday evening in September 2010 and I was on my way to choir rehearsals from work, I was running late and at some point on my way, I tried to take a phone call, lost concentration and ran into the car in front of me. It was a brand new Toyota Corolla and I succeeded in damaging the rear fender. This was sometime in September 2010. Guy got out of the car, looked at me sternly and asked me why. I was fiddling with my stereo knob and making a call, to be frank, it was all my fault. He was a gentleman so he didn’t make a scene, just moved to a side road and we talked. My God, his cigarette breath was so strong and I remember asking myself what a young man was doing so ‘smoked up’ at 6pm. He was upset, rightly so, headed to a meeting. I apologised profusely and we exchanged cards.
It was a very troubled me that drove home, well I still went for rehearsals, with a decision not to take calls whilst driving, after of course sending a text message to him apologising and requesting details on the estimate for the repairs. He didn’t respond, and didn’t take calls until 2 days later. He called and said he would fix his rear fender, because he just imagined I was his younger sister and was embarrassed that he even left me feeling so bad. By the end of that conversation, we had become friends.
It was one of those connections that had nothing to do with me or him, he was engaged so it was clearly platonic. But we made each other better, thanks to God and encouragement from the word that we shared, he took God seriously, and I encouraged him to stop smoking, and he did, over time. That was a major testimony, but I gained more. For me, he was a brother and a very good friend. On days when I needed to be reminded how important family was, this was clearly the guy. He had such an amazing sense of humour and a sacrificial heart. He was hardworking, honest and just down to earth.
Our paths would not have crossed; he is a lawyer, I am an accountant; he lived in Ogudu, and I lived north of Lekki. But that chance meeting changed my life, gave me an opportunity to live and shine as light. Things I took for granted were rare for him and it was a priceless opportunity to minister. It has been, what? 3, almost 4 years, he has gotten married and has a lovely daughter and we’ve met, say, thrice after that incident but you know those relationships that are divine connections orchestrated by God. Those relationships that are for a season, to teach you lessons. Ours was one of such.
That meeting changed my perspective to certain issues, taught me not to write off people because they weren’t like me, and showed me how much love could show others the way. Also, it made me realise that God is behind even the most random events. If he asked me to pay, he would have been history. By His act of kindness, he gained a friend and gave up on a bad habit. Okay…that’s it. Be kind because you can be; those seeds of kindness go a long long way.
I will always be glad for that accident. I gained a brother and a friend. ”
He Said …
“We meet people everyday and while we learn lessons from some, others are a blessing that impacts our lives. Infact, at the point of meeting them, we can never tell how impactful they will be. Having snuck out of the office reluctantly one day to attend to a personal client on the other side of town, I hardly expected to come across a new friend in the most bizarre circumstance.
On my way back to the office, I got stuck in a bit of traffic on Ozumba Mbadiwe Street, Victoria Island, and all of a sudden I heard a car crashing into mine. I instinctively got out of the car to see the extent of the damage caused and for someone who had been away from his desk all day, the first thing that came to my head was, OMG!!
In order not to cause any traffic on the road, we veered right to Adetokunbo Ademola Street, to discuss and decide what to do about the mishap, which with hindsight turned out to be a blessing. We exchanged phone numbers and that was it, we have remained friends till date even though I was reminded a few days ago that we have only seen each other on three occasions including the first.
The focal point of this snippet is not just a tale of how I met my heaven sent friend but how she was instrumental to my ‘winning the battle’ against smoking. I had been a smoker for over 15 years and even though I had desired to drop the habit, I simply couldn’t turn off the urge to smoke like a light switch, because I thought I could depend on myself to do so. A former colleague of mine, Efunbola had sent me a link to a web page on Godly principles of giving up smoking and whilst I can say Efunbola planted the seed, she watered it. This she did by constantly praying with and for me to give up the habit and asking me at the end of each day in subtle ways, how the ‘battle’ went. The battle went well on some days, not so well on others and on some days I lied so she wouldn’t be disappointed and give up encouraging me.
I am delighted and grateful to God that I officially quit smoking sometime in March 2011 because God helped me and took the desire away and till date I wonder why I ever picked up the habit and am amazed at how I eventually gave it up. I owe God to whom all glory belongs for bringing me in contact with such beautiful people especially my accidental friend who have blessed my life.
It is also instrumental to share how random people can be such blessings in different seasons and how God plants them in our lives at those times to aid our journey”.
P.S I now encourage people to fight the ‘battle’ even though I don’t pray to hit their cars before engaging them on the benefits of fighting the battle and the strategy for winning the same. :-) “
Wow!!! I think this is such a powerful story. God needs us to sow random seeds of kindness and like yeast, slowly and powerfully influence others without judgement. It is amazing what that act of kindness can achieve in the life of another. Kindness always yields fruits, endeavour to deliberately sow a seed a kindness today. God is counting on us!
Image Credit: Google Images