Many of you will remember the TV series with this title, which was presented by Cilla Black and which restarted last year with Holly Willoughby as presenter.
I have always loved a surprise, and one day recently when I was rather down, and the weather was wild, a small package arrived in the post. It contained a lovely surprise, and a card saying “Smile. You’ve just been tagged!”. This was part of something started by a group of students (see www.helpothers.org), and on the back of the card it says “Someone reached out to you with an anonymous act of kindness. Now it’s your chance to do the same. Do something nice for someone, leave this card behind, and keep the spirit going!”
I recall a sermon years ago encouraging us to do just this, to do anonymous acts of kindness for those in our community. It can be surprisingly difficult to keep those acts anonymous in a small community, but that’s half the fun!
And as I enjoyed the warm feeling brought by receiving my small surprise, I was reminded that Jesus was the expert as surprising people. No-one expected Him to change water into wine at the wedding in Cana (John 2:1-11); or to feed five thousand families with five loaves and two fish (John 6:1-14); or to heal a man born blind (John 9:1-34). And of course the greatest surprise ever was what we celebrate at Easter, that Jesus was raised from the dead, and is alive! When His disciples saw Him, they were overjoyed. Jesus’ Resurrection is the best surprise ever, and fills us with joy.
How about sharing that joy, that warm feeling, by doing an anonymous act of kindness this week? It doesn’t need to be anything big, a card with some kind words, a bunch of flowers or a few sweets left anonymously in a porch. These little things just might lift someone’s spirits as much as my small package lifted mine.
And what fun we can all have, trying to be creative in our anonymous acts of kindness.
If you would like to know more about the many ways in which Jesus surprises us, do come and join us at any of our services, you might be surprised by the welcome you receive, and by the Good News you hear.
May God’s joy and peace be with any readers of An Tirisdeach who welcome it, Elspeth. (Rev Elspeth MacLean, Tiree Parish Church, tel 220377.)