April 4, 2019
Put on then, as God's chosen ones,
holy and beloved…kindness…
Today we focus on kindness again.
We were once passing our days in malice and envy, devoid of Christ’s kindness, but his mercy is what saved us, not our works. (Titus 3:3-5) God shows his prodigious kindness to us in the person of Jesus Christ. God’s kindness is intended to lead us to repentance. (Romans 2:4) Therefore, it is upon us to show the kindness of Christ towards those around us, with the ultimate goal of serving and honoring him. Once we realize how important that duty is in his eyes, we will invariably ask ourselves if we are doing enough to convey his message of grace. Kindness in line with the example set forth by Jesus−although it will never be manifested in us to the same extent as in Christ−is evidence of the fruit of the Spirit.
So how can we apply this to our lives? It is easy to be kind to someone who is kind and respectful to us. But where true kindness shines the brightest is where there is no reciprocity, where we try to be kind to the ungrateful or even those who are flat-out rude. Personally, I can say that more often than not, when someone is impolite, persevering in kindness will trigger a chain reaction in their mind. They will be irritated, then perplexed, feel a sense of guilt and in the end, many will return the kindness in some fashion or, at the very least, cease the impolite behavior. This is another example of “turning the other cheek.” And if only one of these interactions results in a person questioning your behavior and the Christian convictions on which it is based, and then deciding to follow Jesus too, it would be worth the cost of being kind.
Prayer: Almighty God, thank you for letting us dwell in your Word today. We know that we fail to be kind to others like Jesus. Teach us to follow your example, honoring you and glorifying you by being kind to those around us, pointing towards you, even when it is difficult, so that your holy name may be great among the nations. In your Son, Jesus Christ’s name we pray. Amen.