While driving on I-95 South this morning, I waited as four cars passed so I could merge into the left hand lane. I saw a large enough gap before a trailing red car and went for it. Well, I guess it wasn’t a big enough gap for the driver, because after I changed lanes in front of him I watched the disgruntled individual promptly flip me the bird through my rear view mirror.
Uh, what? You dont even know me.
I guess it was for the discomfort of having to slightly apply his break.
But, honestly. How angry have we become as a culture that we are giving complete strangers the middle finger?
If I was having a bad day I reluctantly admit that I would’ve given it back to him.
It makes me realize how important a choice is; and to not allow anger to fester. We need to be more willing to break the chains of resentment and hostility and instead replace them with chain reactions of kindness. Like the drive thru stories where one thoughtful person decided to pay for the driver’s meal behind him in line and pretty soon the whole drive thru is repeating the same decision. Kindness begets kindness; people catch wind of it and they want to be a part of it too.
It’s a reminder to myself to look for areas of my life where chains of anger and hate need to be broken: gossiping, impatience, jealousy. I know when I see people exhibit virtue in these areas, I take notice and I strive to be like them.
So, instead of making the world an angrier place, let’s be examples to eachother and choose to put some wise words by a woman named St. Mother Teresa into practice:
“People are often unreasonable, irrational and self-centered. Forgive them anyway… Be kind anyway”