the immense power of kindness in bringing out the good points of the characters of others
When I can lift myself above my wounded ego — “What?! How dare you be cruel or disrespectful to me, who is only trying to help you get an education!” — and respond thoughtfully and kindly, a change sometimes occurs, a softening, a reflective moment of calm.
A kind word or tone can transform conflicts into positive experiences. A simple kindness of offering to help a kid by holding books while he rummages through his locker can bring a smile where once there was anger.
Even if all is well in the student’s life at the moment, an act of kindness can echo into the future. Relationships are like bank accounts: we can make deposits through kindness that will give us a buffer against emotionally stressful withdrawals.
The quoted excerpt is from Father Frederick Faber’s Spiritual Conferences, excerpted here.