On Account of Kindness

by Jacqueline Freeman

In the mid-80's, I owned a holistic health center on Martha's Vineyard Island. A woman on my staff and I would talk about how elders seem to become more invisible to society as they age. So, we decided we would volunteer at the elderly center and do something to honor them.

Every Friday morning we went there and spent a few hours massaging shoulders and giving foot rubs to anyone who looked like they could use one. As we did that, we talked with them, asking them questions and appreciating the wisdom they shared with us.

Years later I had saved up a little sum toward a home of my own. One of my clients, who owned a real estate company, told me about some acreage that was about to go on the market. She suggested I look at it and if I liked it, that I make an offer through one of her agents. The property was just what I was looking for. I asked the agent to write an offer on it, but to write it for a lesser amount than was being asked. Even scrimping, I knew I could only come up with half the asking price.

The agent told me it was rude to put in such a low offer and it would never be accepted. I told her this wasn't a negotiation tactic, it was all I could afford. She presented the offer and the next day it was accepted. The agent was amazed since the land clearly was worth the asking price.

Some weeks later I learned why that happened.

The woman who read my offer was selling the land for her mother. Her mother had been one of the elderly women whose feet, on many occasions, I'd rubbed three years earlier.

The mother had told her daughter many times how much she appreciated my doing that and how much better she felt afterwards. When my offer came in, as acknowledgement for those free foot rubs years earlier, they sold me the land for the price I could afford.

That still is, to me, a miracle. I had no idea way back then that these little acts of kindness we did would come back years later and end up saving me a small fortune in return.


Jacqueline Freeman lives in the very small town of Venersborg in Washington state. She teaches people how to start and run businesses that are based on love and kindness. She also shows them how to use their businesses to make a difference in the world.

In the past 3 years she has helped 1,000 small business owners personally donate $2.5 million, over 200,000 volunteer hours, and enough blood to save 7,300 lives. Jacqueline can be reached at Please mention that you saw this story on To Be A Blessing if you write :-) Thanks!


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