“Love is kind”.
1 Cor 13:4 NIV
Kindness is often confused with sentimentality. “A businessman remarked to his wife one evening over dinner that he was firing his chauffeur. ‘He nearly killed me again today’, he said, ‘That’s the third time’. His ‘kind’ wife answered: ‘O no, dear, don’t fire him. Give him just one more chance’” (W.E. Sangster, The Pure in Heart, p134). To some minds kindness and Christianity are almost the same thing. So impressive are some acts of kindness, so filled with love and humility, that they say more than a lot of religious talk would.
To be kind is to be loving in the briefer contacts of life. It is to think of others and do something to relieve their plight or misfortune. It is to show appreciation and understanding of other people’s difficulties. Usually it means to say nothing but to do much. At other times the kindness is in the word itself. It is one of the main components of Christian love. A couple once boarded a crowded train at the last minute, hot, flustered and confused. Once on and with the train moving they discovered they were seventeen coaches away from their pre-booked seats. Soon the train was lurching from side to side as it picked up speed and they were struggling with heavy suitcases. A man observing them jumped up from his seat and offered to carry their biggest case and they moved along much more smoothly. In an instant he had reached out in kindness and eased their awkward day along.
Look for moments like that. They can crop up “out of the blue” anywhere at any time. Paul urged the Christians at Ephesus to “be kind one to another” (Ep 4:31 NIV). You be, too.
Lord, prompt me to see where I can show kindness.