The Power of One

The Power of One

From Chicken Soup for the Latter-day Saint Soul

The Power of One

But charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever and who so is found possessing it at the last day, it shall be well with him.

Moroni 7:17

I was almost always in my office on Tuesday and Thursday mornings by 6 A.M. Those were my Book of Mormon teaching days. I was, however, a little later on this particular Thursday because it was an exam day.

As was my custom, I had stopped by Winchell’s to get some doughnuts, hoping to sweeten the experience just a little. It was a gray day, dark and dim.

As I went in, there were two lines. In the line to my right was a young man whom I recognized as a participant in one of our leadership programs. We chatted. “How are you? How is school going?” The usual conversation.

There was an older man standing just in front of this student. I had not paid much attention, but did notice the man fumbling through his pocket and counting his change. Looking up at the order board, he changed from a drink and a doughnut to a hot drink.

I went about my business, ordered my doughnuts and said good-bye to this young man as he went on his way.

Shortly, I saw the clerk come from behind the counter and walk over to the man with his drink. She laid a doughnut on the table and said, “That young man has bought you a doughnut.”

I watched the student as he walked down the street toward school. He never looked back. Not for credit. Not for admiration. He simply walked on, his backpack flung across his shoulder and his physics book under his arm.

I think of the everyday embodiment of the “small acts of kindness” that this young man represented.

Small acts of service are done so willingly and so lovingly every day by so many. “Compassionate service” goes on in the quietest places and the most anonymous corners.

The “power of one” is real.

Maren Mouritsen

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