164923006A couple of weeks ago, I shared a blog post on my Facebook page that I had read about reaching out to a stranger who is hurting. It was a short, but powerful message you can read here if you’d like.

A mom, Rebecca, shared her own story of being helped by a stranger. Rebecca’s story was so moving that I asked her permission to share it with you.  She kindly agreed.

When my daughter (now 14) was a year and a half old, I booked a trip from IL to GA to visit my parents and brother. Before I left, I had gotten fired from my job (long story), and even though I was pregnant with our son, my then husband had told me he wanted out of our marriage. To make matters worse, my daughter had a double ear infection, and was still on antibiotics.

Needless to say, it was a rough flight.  As I struggled to console a cranky toddler, everything just overwhelmed me, and I lost it and just cried and cried and cried. I don’t know which one of us was creating more of a disturbance.

Then, out of the blue, a young mother with a few little ones of her own approached me and asked me if she could hold my baby for me. I didn’t even know you could walk around on a plane. And I knew she had her hands full herself. But, being a mother, she apparently understood what I was struggling with, and left her comfort zone to help a hurting person in need. She told me she would take good care of my daughter, and bring her back when the flight was over. She insisted that I get some rest.

I felt ashamed and embarrassed for having created such a scene. But I also felt the love emanating from the kind act of a complete stranger. I haven’t forgotten that moment, and never will. And, while it may be way out of my comfort zone, I would not hesitate to do the same for another person.

Listen…God is speaking to you, to be His hands and feet. Hug & comfort one another. It’ll do wonders for them, and you as well!

Rebecca’s story is such a good reminder that we can make a difference even to a complete stranger.  Give a smile to a mom with a cranky toddler at a restaurant. Offer to help a mom load her groceries into her car while she wrangles her two-year-old.  If you see someone crying alone, step out of your comfort zone and ask, “Can I give you a hug?”

Rebecca has never forgotten the kindness of that mom over 12 years ago. She made a profound impact on Rebecca’s heart and soul.

You and I can do the same.

What about you? Have you ever been on the receiving end of a stranger’s kindness? Have you ever comforted or encouraged someone you didn’t know? 

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