Reflection on Kindness

Over the summer, I visited family in Georgia.  Public schools start near the beginning of August so I did not have as much time with my grade-school nephews as I would have liked.  Nevertheless, a good time was had by all.

I have talked with them about flights to and from Georgia so they know that I always bring some food with me to eat on the plane.  The day before I was due to fly home, 8-year old Leo came up to me.  Reaching into his school backpack, he pulled out some snacks.  “These are the snacks that Mommy gave me for school,” he said.  “I saved them for you so you can have something to eat on the plane.”

I thanked him and gave him a big hug.  His gesture was small and extraordinary at the same time.

Among other things, his kindness reminded me of the Eucharist.  Leo engaged in self-offering in order to provide food for me.  I wondered about the self-offering in which Jesus engaged in order to nourish his followers with his Body and Blood.  I wondered about the times I have failed to connect regular acts of kindness I receive to God’s overflowing compassion.  The thought was sobering.  May Leo’s act of love inspire me to be more keenly sensitive to God’s love around me in the sacraments and throughout my daily life.