Painting rocks to plant seeds of kindness

Published 12:58 am Saturday, June 24, 2017

While running an errand last week, I found a palm-sized painted rock.  I’d read about this fad on Facebook, seeing pictures posted on a page called “Andalusia Rocks.”  I first heard about it while watching a news report about a lady in Prattville painting rocks and placing them around town for others to find.

So I asked to join the Facebook page and posted a picture of the rock I found.  Finders are not supposed to be keepers from what I’ve learned about this fad, so I chose another location to leave the rock for someone else to find.

This phenomenon is now spreading from city to city.  People of all ages are painting, hiding, and searching for rocks.  Mothers whose children are out of school for the summer have to be excited about the hours spent painting rocks.

The rocks can be found in all shapes, sizes and colors.  Many of the rock pictures posted on Facebook show messages like “Be kind,” “God is good,” and “Love,” and a Scripture reference such as John 3:16.

How did this phenomenon begin?  An internet search reveals “The Kindness Rocks Project” that Megan Murphy created “to spread inspiration and motivation for unsuspecting recipients through random inspirational rocks dropped along the way.”

Murphy’s website states, “Now more than ever kindness can become a connecting force for good during uncertain times.  Many people, including myself, are feeling a sense…unease and restlessness due to the current events taking place in our world today, and I believe that our united strength can be cultivated through simple random acts of kindness.  Each of us can make a positive difference.”

She goes on to write that after losing her parents at a young age, she began searching for random messages of inspiration – like a heart-shaped rock – when she took her morning walk or strolled on the beach.  She recalled thinking other people might need the messages she needed.  “It started as a hobby of one (person)…painting and dropping a few rocks at a time.”

Megan Murphy says she combined her hobby with social media, and a website and she encouraged others to join her.  Now, her hobby has turned into a grassroots movement that has spread to other cities and even countries around the world.  “Our goal is to encourage others to find cool creative ways to reach out and brighten someone’s day unexpectedly whether it be through kindness rocks, love notes, random acts of generosity…..One message at just the right moment can change your entire day…outlook…life!”

Proverbs 12:25 teaches us, “Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up” (NIV).  One of Murphy’s favorite quotes reads, “Your legacy is every life you have touched.”  Another Facebook friend recently posted a picture of a delicate, beautiful flower along with these words, “I found this rain lily in our yard, thanks to my deceased sister who sowed rain lily seeds everywhere she went.”

Just think…a rock that could cause hurt when thrown in anger can, instead, be planted as a seed of kindness.  I agree with Megan Murphy, “Together we can make a positive impact!”


– Jan White is an award-winning columnist. She can be reached at