Apologies to any ornithologists out there but birds are not my favourite creatures.
Look at ravens for example, usually either found in horror films, accompanying ‘Disney villains’ or pecking at something disgusting on the road. Even their collective name, ‘an unkindness of ravens’ doesn’t put them in top spot of the animal kingdom!
However recently I read something about ravens that has begun to change the way I think of them.
They not only remember people who help them but they tell the other birds about the kindness, and this in turn makes them friendlier and more trusting of humans.
I recently read a newspaper article about a little girl who regularly fed the ravens that appeared in her garden and over time they began to bring her gifts in return. She now has a precious collection of buttons, paper clips, shards of glass, pieces of Lego as well as other random items which she keeps categorised in a box.
This reminded me of the story in the Bible where Elijah is fed by ravens :
‘Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: ‘Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. You will drink from the brook, and I have directed the ravens to supply you with food there.”
So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.’ 1 Kings 17:2-6
Now I wonder if Elijah had once shown kindness to these birds and they were returning this gesture by ‘paying it forward’.
I love to hear about and participate in acts of kindness to others and I believe that being kind brings benefits to the giver as well as the recipient.
Acting kindly can help you relax, makes you feel good, happier and more optimistic about things.
Kindness doesn’t have to be about money – you can give your time or things you don’t use anymore, help someone with a task, make a call, post a letter or send a text. Every thoughtful act counts!
Think about something kind you could do today, tomorrow or on a special occasion.
‘I expect to pass through life but once. If therefore, there be any kindness I can show or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again’
– William Penn
Can I encourage you today that through your acts of kindness, God can bless and provide for others.
You might just change someone’s day!
Written by Susan Hinton (Hope City Newcastle) as part of the SHE IS Collective Blog Series