10.28.2013

Sixty By Sixty Guest Post

Today I'm excited to send my mom a Birthday Blessings wish. 
A retired registered nurse, Mom is the kind of person whose love language is service, so it's a great fit that today's guest post comes from my friend Deanna, who has kindly offered to share her Sixty by Sixty story with us.



Sixty By Sixty by Deanna E.

What do a You Tube video, a TV story, and a Bible study have in common? These were the three things that came together to inspire my decision to complete 60 RAK’s (random acts of kindness) in the year leading up to my 60th birthday. 

Last fall a friend of mine posted a You Tube video of a young man who spent his 22nd birthday doing 22 RAK’s in his community. Shortly after that I saw a story of a woman who was on the way to completing 50 acts during her first year in the 50’s. Then, during the Bible study on the book of James, we talked about our faith spurring us to action. It was then that I came to the decision of how I wanted to spend the year leading up to my 60th birthday. I committed to doing 60 RAK’s before I turned 60.

I knew that if I kept the decision to myself I’d give up and the mission would peter out, so I told the group of ladies in the study, asking them to hold me accountable. I then enlisted my friends on Facebook to do the same. In return, I posted on Facebook each RAK as I completed them. The first person to tell me that she was going to be my main cheerleader was Barbara, my friend and former co-worker. She was even the recipient of some of the RAK’s.

Click picture to see what Deanna's up to in this shot.

One thing I learned from this experience was that when I looked for the acts, they usually were nowhere to be found. But when I let the Spirit that lives within me direct me, I had no trouble seeing things that could be done. Another thing I learned is that is not always easy being kind. I made some sacrifices to complete some of them, but from those sacrifices came wonderful blessings. I learned that it is in giving that we receive, and, more times than not, I was the one blessed.

The most important thing I have taken away from this experience is that there are opportunities to be kind all around us, every day. It can be as simple as a smile or a kind word. We just have to take our eyes off of ourselves and put them on those around us.

Some of the things I will remember about this time: 

         --The look in the eyes of a grateful homeless man who was the recipient of some brownies I had in my car (the eyes of Jesus is what I saw in those beautiful eyes).
         --I helped serve Mission Galveston’s Thanksgiving dinner for the homeless of Galveston. What a pleasure it was visiting with some of the ones who attended.
         --I got to participate in a project that bought Christmas toys for disadvantaged children. We delivered the presents ourselves to the family. This family had a poinsettia for us as a thank you! Warmed my heart for sure!
         --I made up baskets of fruit and delivered them to people who moved into my neighborhood. What a joy it was to meet them, some even invited me in for a visit.

By the way, I completed 76 RAK’s, surpassing my goal, 
and I did it before my birthday! 


Author bio: Before retiring three years ago, Deanna was in public education for over 35 years. She taught in grades 3-6 plus a short stint as a Title 1 reading teacher. Since she was in 2nd grade, Deanna knew she wanted to be a teacher. What she misses the most is the interaction she had with her students and getting to build relationships with them as well as their parents. She loved seeing the “light bulb” go on when a student got it. She loved their smiles, hugs, notes, and other forms of affirmation. She now enjoys spending time with her husband, children, and four grandchildren. Deanna is grateful to her friend for letting her tell about her year of RAK’s.

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My pleasure, Deanna. Congratulations! Having been a recipient of a few of those RAKs connects me to your post in such a personal way. Thank you for inspiring us with the joy from your incredible journey. 




1 comment:

I really enjoy hearing from my readers; thanks for sharing your reflections with us!

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