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Life Lesson from Stranger Becomes New Year’s Resolution


I do not know about you but starting a new year, setting new goals, and staying focused can be stressful. If you are like me, the holidays packed my schedule and left me feeling exhausted. Then, suddenly, I was hit with a New Year and a strong desire to do things better.

Unfortunately, I am not alone when I share that I rarely finish the resolutions that I start – if I even try to make any. As the year and daily duties increase, I find myself on the same old path of a wild – dare I say, out of control – ride in life!

During the first sermon of the year, my pastor suggested choosing a single word to stick to. That seems simple and achievable, right?

What if all of us reading this article chose the word kindness? What difference might we make for our fellow mankind!

A co-worker, Choir Director Amy Twilley, was telling me about an experience with the people of Crystal Springs United Methodist Church and Baddour residents who participate in The Miracles, an audition choir.

Before the choir’s performance, the congregation collected bios and a Christmas wish list for each choir member, and they prayed and shopped for them. Even resident choir members were surprised. One told Amy she was amazed that strangers were so loving and kind and generous to them.

What a wonderful thought: to choose to be kind to people we do not know and may never see again. That warms my heart. Doesn’t it feel good when someone is kind to us?

Many of the men and women with intellectual and developmental disabilities and autism who live at The Baddour Center have experienced difficulties throughout their lives, such as bullying or the inability to have meaningful employment. They know the opposite feeling of kindness.

I often say that the population we serve at Baddour are “my people” because they love big and make me feel like a rockstar whenever I arrive at work, a wonderful reprieve from the cruelty of the world.

For 2024, let’s not overcomplicate our New Year’s resolutions; let’s continue laughter and the generous spirit of the holidays that makes the season so bright and joyful.

Let’s learn from strangers and actively be kind to the people around us – whether we know them or not. Who will you show kindness to today?

From all of us at The Baddour Center, Happy New Year, and thank you to those of you who have been kind to residents of The Baddour Center throughout our 45-year history!

This article first appeared on Mississippi Today and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.

Read original article by clicking here.

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