We want recognition or credit for all the good things we have done. We want others to stand at attention and take notice. I don’t want to downplay the importance of encouraging others in a job well done. However, the praise of others should never be at the root of the matter. It should not be what is driving us to do good and be kind. Rather than desiring the praise of others, God requires us to a “be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10)
It means loving God AND loving others. But how are we doing with the little things? Are we being faithful in the small things that come our way? To live a selfless life requires us to constantly think about the other people in the room. It completely takes the focus off of us. Being the hands and feet of Jesus makes you think differently in your everyday life. What if you said a kind word to the cashier today? How can you be an encouragement to those who cross your path? Could you send some flowers to your child’s teacher? Maybe start closer to home–tell your hubby and kids that you love them?
The Greek word for kindness is chrestotoes, meaning “gentle love” or “goodness in action.” It is a fruit of the Spirit (See Galatians 5:22-23) and is used to describe a person’s inner disposition. One who has a generous temperament that puts others at ease and refrains from doing harm is considered kind. In Matthew 11:30, Christ uses the root of this word, chrestos, when He says His “yoke is easy,” meaning it does not irritate or wear away. The Greeks would use chrestos as a description of good wine, meaning that it’s mellow. It’s clear that the word emphasizes the kind of spirit out of which certain actions flow. It is out of the abundance of being filled with the Holy Spirit that we can perform acts of kindness.
“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.” (Titus 3:4-5)
We bestow God’s mercy to someone else because Christ has done the same for us. Kindness is best shown when the other person has no way to pay you back. You give without any strings attached. There are absolutely no expectations attached along with the act of kindness. Oh, how I love that! That is why this fruit of the Spirit is absolutely divine.
“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32
On Saturday night we went to watch Lady Antebellum perform at the iHeartRadio festival in Austin, TX. We had the privilege of seeing our friends, Hillary Scott and Chris Tyrrell, before the show. We serve alongside them in serving the people of Haiti with an organization called myLIFEspeaks. Minutes before going on to perform, Chris handed my son a pair of autographed drumsticks. He completely made this lil’ guy’s day! This act of kindness was completely unexpected. Although Kade fell asleep during Carrie Underwood’s performance (don’t ask me how!), his lil’ hands had a tight grip on those sticks. Trust me, his sisters tried to sneak them out of his hands during his sleep and he quickly clenched his hands!!
That’s what kindness is all about. Sharing some love in the most unforeseen moments. Making the most of someone else’s day.