One Man’s Kindness to a Teenage Girl

My friend, Heidi Stokes, told me a wonderful, life-changing story that is as simple as it is powerful. I wanted to share it because it’s an excellent reminder of the effect we have on everyone we come into contact with. Here is Heidi’s story.

Heidi Stokes

My first job in high school was waitressing. I wanted to do everything perfectly but I kept messing up. For some reason I had a mental block when people asked me to bring their drinks to them with their meal instead of right after they ordered. Over and over again, I’d bring people their food and forget their drinks. So many people got so upset with me. I understood why they were angry—they couldn’t eat their meal without their drink. I felt ashamed of myself, like I was the biggest idiot in the world.

The worst moment came when I screwed up one man’s order three different ways. He was in a wheelchair so I felt especially terrible. I was really rattled and felt like it was the end of the world. As I apologized for the third or fourth time, he reached out, touched my arm, looked me in the eye and said, “It’s okay. It’s one meal out of a lifetime of meals. I can wait.” NO one had EVER acted like that before. I wanted to kiss his feet.

It was a watershed moment. With just a few kind words, he put everything in perspective. I was making honest mistakes and doing the best I could at the time. I stopped beating myself up when other customers would make mean-spirited comments. Because he was kind to me, I learned to be kinder to myself. And ever since then, I began looking for opportunities to say a kind word to others who were having a bad day.

I later found out that this man had a degenerative muscle disease and only had a year or so to live. I think of him every time I reach out to someone in distress. And I am honored that in this way, his legacy of kindness lives on.

Click here to view all my posts on the transcendent power of kindness.


Phil is the author of Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, a comprehensive guide to living a spiritual life. Who will benefit from reading it?

Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to start one
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier

To order your copy of Through God’s Eyes, go to OR order from Amazon at OR for an inscribed copy, click here to e-mail Phil for information.

Click here for more information about Through God’s Eyes.
Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Through God’s Eyes won first place in the “Spirituality and Inspirational” category at the San Diego Book Awards on June 22, 2013.

Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.

Want to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 40-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
• the complete table of contents
• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders

Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!


Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents on Amazon.

Order it at

In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?

Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.

Schedule a Mastery Mentoring phone session with Phil to learn how to apply principles of spiritual living more effortlessly and effectively. Priced affordably! Click here to e-mail Phil for details.

SiSe_fullcover_final.inddPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent people he interviewed, including Joan Borysenko, Deepak Chopra, geneticist Dr. Francis Collins, acclaimed sportswriter Frank Deford, Dr. Larry Dossey, Wayne Dyer, Dan Millman, Caroline Myss, Dr. Christiane Northrup, Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen, Dr. Bernie Siegel, James Van Praagh, singer Billy Vera, Doreen Virtue, Neale Donald Walsch, and bassist Victor Wooten.

Here is a three-minute video that introduces you to Phil and his book. Click here to order Sixty Seconds. Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories. Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers. Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.

Sixty Seconds was one of three finalists in the General Interest/How-To category at the 12th annual Visionary Awards presented by COVR (Coalition of Visionary Resources) in Denver on June 27, 2009.


6 Responses to “One Man’s Kindness to a Teenage Girl”

  1. MNCyn Says:

    Isn’t it amazing that a man with just a few hundred meals left in his lifetime is kinder than those with a few thousand? I was the world’s worst waitress and I think I used to be kinder. Thank you for reminding me.

  2. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Yes, it’s a good reminder for all of us, MNCyn.

  3. DeeDee Says:

    Very inspiring story,,,,great reminder, need this every once in a while.
    Thanks, Dd

  4. Phil Bolsta Says:

    You bet, DeeDee!

  5. Kathleen Says:

    I love the idea of a “legacy of kindness.” This story is a good reminder for all of us.

  6. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Indeed it is, Kathleen.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 463 other followers

%d bloggers like this: