We’ll Take a Cup of Kindness Yet
And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.
~ Ephesians 4:32
The importance of kindness and compassion in Christian life is enormous. “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (Colossians 3:12) The message is repeated again and again, by every person in the New Testament, including Christ: “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” (John 13:34)
What makes us unkind? One cause is lack of faith; another might be, insufficient education in the Gospel. But a specific cause of many unkindnesses is our own pain. It could be the pain of poor self-image, or a feeling of entitlement — a lack of gratitude. Or it could be physical pain — enough pain makes anyone crabby.
Most people who have been Christians for any length of time understand kindness. Just in secular life, anyone without a mental problem learns to treat some people - often people who can do them some good - with a degree of decency and respect. But of course, as Christians, we are expected to show kindness universally, to everyone.
We cannot fight the fight alone, for Satan is stronger than us. We will not resist crabbiness and pain without lashing out at others, unless and until we have the power of the Holy Spirit within us. It is one of the important goals of our growth in faith.
Father, let me remember and put into effect your commandment that we be kind to one another, whether I feel like it or not. Amen.
~ Mason Barge
Editor, Daily Prayer