This year has been one of rancor, distrust, hatred, senseless violence, fear and doubt. This isn’t all about politics, either. But this is all about a sad and terrible trend happening in way too many towns and states. Worst of all, even children are participating in violence and sometimes murder.
The worst of it all is that there seems to be no exact reason for these all-too-often killings and violence. How many times this year have we heard of more violence toward Jews? How many times this year have we heard more violence toward school children? How many times this year have we heard more violence toward innocent people going about their business in a store?
Each and every day the news is filled with robberies, gang violence, murder, shooting in public places, kidnapping and more. The “good” news is pretty thin on the ground these days, but thankfully, there still is some good here and there.
Here is where the “good” comes in: many of our children are practicing kindness, whether they know it or not. They see a shy kid at lunch time and invite him or her to their table. They help others where they can. They are generous and kind, and are being raised to accept difference and to put themselves in another person’s shoes. How many times do we hear of one child saving up his/her allowance to buy toys for other kids at Christmas? And there are so many more acts of kindness and love.
This is EXACTLY how we change the climate of hatred. It’s awfully hard to hate someone who is kind to you. Just a small bit of kindness makes an enormous change in peoples’ hearts and minds. For this coming new year, 2020, I hope that there is positive change in our hearts and minds. I hope for more love and less hate, for more kindness and less selfishness, for more forgiveness than anger and fear.
My own New Year’s resolution is pretty simple: to practice kindness, forgiveness and love. Wish me luck, and good luck to us all in this coming year.