I went to the grocery store recently with our daughter, Barrett, who is weathering the quarantine together with us. The store was very crowded. There was a young lady—probably high school age—who was collecting the carts, sanitizing them, and putting them in order so that people could grab them quickly. While pushing a train of these carts, somehow her finger got jammed between two of them and it hurt her. She stood there, waving her hand, then walked away talking to herself trying to cope with the pain. But what she didn't realize is that she had left the carts in a place where no one could get in or out of the store. Everybody was stopped. She was focused on her finger and people were getting mad and angry because they were being inconvenienced and not able to get into the store. I have to admit I kind of felt that way too and wanted to say, “Can you move some stuff so we can get out of here?”
But my daughter looked at the girl and said, “Can I help you?” It was the kindest, nicest thing. It was amazing to watch. The girl said, “No, I’m okay.” But it visibly stopped me and the other people standing around waiting on her—we were all struck by what a kind thing it was to say. It was the right thing to do. It's what the Bible says is one of the fruits of the Spirit: kindness. It was stepping into the other person’s shoes and saying, “Look, I know you don't like what's going on, but can I help you? Can we work together to solve this problem?” That's what we need during this quarantine period. We need just plain good old-fashioned kindness.