“Those who are kind benefit themselves, but the cruel bring ruin on themselves.” (Proverbs 11:17)
What does it take to be kind? A smile, a helping hand, a thoughtful gesture, or a servant’s attitude all come in handy at this point. Too often we are influenced by the harshness of those around us who are extremely self-absorbed and bent on getting their way. It’s very easy to allow their behavior to influence ours. We get pushed, we push back. We get disrespected, we disrespect back with a higher percentage of venom than what we were given. If someone is short with us, the next person we meet, we might unload our frustration on them. All that…even before we leave our house for the day!
What does it take to be kind? It starts way before an outward action. It begins within the heart of the giver…always. Someone who is bent on being kind is “other-minded.” They are focused on others primarily instead of themselves. They are thinking how they can be a blessing instead of receiving one from someone else. They are people who are mindful of the pain in the lives of others, instead of being so wrapped up in their world they can’t see the disillusionment around them. Kindness must come from within. For those who are in fellowship with Christ, it’s a lifestyle which flows rather than being forced. However, if we are not careful, we slide to the flesh side of the road and miss valuable opportunities to minister.
Years ago, my daughter, who is a Japanese native speaker was riding on a train in Japan near Hiroshima. Sitting next to her was a woman who had scars on her arms. When she heard my daughter speak Japanese, her eyes lifted and began to listen in to her conversation. Britni turned to her and asked her how she was doing and she blossomed like a flower. A kind word of concern, caused the elderly woman to talk about her scars from the atomic bomb dropped on her city when she was a child. There was no anger or hate…just a fellow pilgrim who was trying to manage her life. Do you have any thoughtful words or actions on your heart today? There could be someone who is full of scars who desperately needs your caring voice. Just be kind this day…beginning in your home.