Each day is dotted with small, seemingly insignificant interactions. In the checkout line at the grocery store, walking on the biking path in the park, pumping gas at the convenience store down the street, or simply running through the drive thru at Starbucks for a morning pick me up. From morning to evening, our lives are marked with little conversations with strangers and acquaintances. Every day we can trace what we did, where we went and what we accomplished by what faces we encountered.
When added up over the course of a day, week or year, these little dots start to make quite a mark. The time spent interacting with people we couldn't name and know nothing about (other than maybe the fact that they work at a certain store or drive a certain car) actually comprises of a good portion of our days and, over time, our lives. What started out looking insignificant becomes anything but when looked at over the course of a life.
It raises the question, shouldn't we be making more out of these little snippets of "paper or plastic?" or holding open the door for the person coming in just a few steps behind, or waving another driver out into a busy stream of traffic when they were stuck trying to make that impossible left turn? Our lives are scattered with these little circumstances and yet we treat them as the nothingness in between the real meat of life. Maybe, those little moments are meatier then we give them credit for. Letting one car out at the intersection may not seem like much of a matter for deep interpretation, but when faced with these kinds of situations over and over throughout the course of a life, the time adds up and so does the importance that they play.
We have the choice to either treat these small interactions and minor occurances as insignificant after thoughts, not paying much attention to how we treat them and the impact they have on ourselves or others; or we can treat each of these little moments as a big opportunity.
Next time you come across a new face, either a stranger in the street or an employee at a business you frequent, make a point to be a bright spot in their day. Give them a smile, ask them how they are doing, or give them a genuine compliment. This might seem silly. Could a smile really make a difference? A smile or kind word might seem like no big deal, but you just never know what light it could bring to someone's day. Maybe that person you complimented just went through a break up. Maybe the stranger you smiled at is battling with depression. Perhaps the girl at the checkout needed a friendly face after the irrate customer that just went through her line only a brief 10 minutes ago. You just never know how your simple act of kindness could impact the life of another.
I challenge you to be the light in someone's life. Share your smile. Exchange a kind word. Make a generous gesture. Tomorrow, throughout the course of your day, you will be faced with countless opportunities to carry a peaceful and loving spirit to a world that is filled with animosity and negativity. Bring to it the love of Christ. You can spread his love by the simplest of actions in the most common of circumstances. Will you take on the challenge?