This was a thought I’ve been having for the last few months. Posts I read, seeing some of my students give up on being kind have kept me thinking. Why does it seem that people cheer on the one who gives up on kindness? Why do people think you’re strong when you’re mean?
Obviously not an easy question to answer. I have some initial thoughts on the matter but decided to dig in a bit. Here’s what I found to be a good definition.
Kindness is defined as the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate. Affection, gentleness, warmth, concern, and care are words that are associated with kindness. While kindness has a connotation of meaning someone is naive or weak, that is not the case. Being kind often requires courage and strength.
It’s the last bit of the definition that jumped out at me. Really?
It’s not easy being kind? How can that be? Being kind gives so much joy to the giver and the receiver.
Yep, I can see that to be totally true. Why should I be kind when no one is kind to me? I can hear many saying, “I give and I give but never receive the same kindnesses from others!”
and that’s when it hit me, me, me, me, me…
The definition clearly says what kindness is but definitely not why we give it. There’s simply not enough Jesus in our lives!
In our sin, we try to do God’s will but often fail. We still see input = output. I blame my physics teacher for that one. God teaches us over and over this is not the truth. We read in John 3:30:
John 3:30 (NIV)
He must become greater; I must become less.”
As I drink my Highlander Grogg, watch snaps of my beautiful family, and enjoy my morning off of school it’s easy to be happy and content. It’s when we feel we are living our lives for Jesus and don’t see the returns that life gets sticky. Those are the moments I need to remind myself it’s not about me. It’s all about Jesus. I can’t control other people’s thoughts and actions. I don’t have the ability to make Jesus’ love work in others, but I know someone who does have that ability. Our God has called us to a life of works, action, radical love, and service to others. Keep sharing the love of Jesus in your life not because you’ll get a return, but because it’s all you can do as you live your redeemed life. By God’s grace, we have it all.
I pray that we never give up on being kind. I pray that we never forget our completeness is found in Christ and not in the results of our own actions.
Colossians 3:12 (NIV)
So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. |
Ramblings from the kitchen table…. Have a blessed day.