"Be Kind"

Terry Walton



I Was Thinking…

Abraham Heschel once wrote, “When I was young I admired clever people.  Now that I am older, I admire kind people.”  Life has a way of changing our perspective along the journey.  I am amazed that “kindness” is mentioned as one of the fruit of the Holy Spirit in Paul’s letter to the Galatians (5:22ff).  It seems that the need for “kindness” should be obvious to the person of faith and not need to be listed on such a holy list.  But the longer I live, the more I understand how difficult it can be to practice kindness.

Our grandmothers knew about kindness when they passed to future generations the philosophy that “You get more with honey than you get with vinegar.”  I have even heard a grandmother say “Sweet kindness is a much better route to take than sour tongue grouchiness.”  Thanks to all the grandmothers for such wisdom for our living.

Why do I write this week about kindness?  Well, I get a sense by reading Facebook and listening to talk radio that we might just need reminding of this simple Christian fruit.  It is easy to get out of sorts about all kinds of things.  Yet, when we feel we have every right to be a little “mean spirited” then that is the time to pull out the honey jar and offer some kindness.  Even if we are correct in a matter of seeming importance or if someone has betrayed our trust and disappointed us, remember “be kind”.  It will please God that we were bearing the fruit of God’s Spirit.

So whether you voted red, blue or purple…let’s be kind.  The beauty of our world is that we’re all different and yet we are all equally loved by God.  So whether you cheered for the Cubs or the Indians…let’s be kind.  The beauty of our world is that we all have hopes and dreams of victory.  So whether you are progressive or conservative theologically…let’s be kind.   The beauty of the world is that we’re all on the journey and none of us have a corner on the market of God’s ways and God’s thoughts.  So whether you are a man or a woman, black or white, short or tall, wide or narrow…let’s be kind.  We’ve had very little choice in any of this and we all desire to be loved and feel valued.

Be kind my friends.  It is God’s desire of all of us.  “…be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.”(Ephesians 4:32)

Always thinking…


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