A hope note
“The real index of civilization is when people are kinder than they need to be.” —Louis de Bernieres
Since last summer, two sisters in LaGrange, Ky., Raegan Richins, 10, and Rylyn Richins, 8, have been busy making yard signs that deliver a simple, two-word message to all passers-by: “Be Kind” (in Spanish, “Se Amable”). Each horizontal sign is a little under 3 feet by 2 feet, decorated with hearts and stars on a field of vivid colors and staked in the ground with wire legs.
The girls ask a $10 donation for each sign and donate all the proceeds to a favorite local charity like the Humane Society or Blessings in a Backpack. One of their charities is Pillar, which serves special-needs children. Raegan and Rylyn have three siblings with special needs.
In their first two months, the girls sold 1,500 signs and raised $15,000 for their charities.
The girls model Jesus’ command to “go the second mile” or to do a little more than is required or expected.
When he was a child, Gandhi discovered an Indian poem that left a deep impression on him for life: “For a bowl of water give a goodly meal; / For a kindly greeting bow thou down with zeal; / For a simple penny pay thou back with gold; / If thy life be rescued, life do not withhold. / Thus the words and actions of the wise regard; / Every little service tenfold they reward. / But the truly noble know all people as one, / And return with gladness good for evil done.”
With so many elected officials who model bullying, chewing up others and spitting them out like sour grapes, how sweet it is to have two little girls urging us to show a little kindness.