Make Kindness the Norm

World Kindness Day

by Christine Sine

by Kathie Hempel

The theme of this year’s World Kindness Day is simple. Yet making kindness the norm is not. I am not a fan of truisms that become catchphrases, as we tend not to consider them as deeply as we should. So let me start here: kindness is not an option. It is a covenant requirement.

1 Peter:4-7

…by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; to virtue knowledge; 6 to knowledge self-control; to self-control, perseverance; to perseverance godliness; 7 to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness love. (NKJV)

As people of faith, we are called upon to give “all diligence” to add to our faith virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. Notice how what leads to love is kindness The greatest commandment in Matthew tells us we love God first and then Man. Again, this is not an option or suggestion. We are called to kindness. 

How well are we doing?

Isaiah 54:10

“…For the mountains shall depart
And the hills be removed,
But my kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall my covenant of peace be removed,”
Says the Lord, who has mercy on you. (NKJV)

Kindness is directly linked to the covenant of peace. We need to think about that. We need to pray for that.

Jeremiah 2:2

Go and cry in the hearing of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord:
“I remember you,
The kindness of your youth,
The love of your betrothal,
When you went after Me in the wilderness,
In a land not sown. (NKJV)

God remembers and reveres kindness. Kindness in the wilderness we find ourselves in. We are to show this not only to those we know, who are our friends but everywhere in lands “not sown.” He sent his son into the world to sow the seeds of true faith which Jesus showed us through kindness. 

Jesus’ last act was to leave us with his Spirit, sown into our very being so that we might have the Fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Kindness is at their center, it holds them all together within the bookends of love and self-control. All bequeathed to us by Jesus himself, so we might follow and represent his Father on earth.

Mark Twain wrote: “Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” Jesus modeled this literally.

“Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness,” penned Seneca, born four years before the death of Christ, who died aged 65 in Rome. He was a philosopher, statesman, orator, tragedian, and Rome’s leading intellectual figure in the mid-1st century. When Paul was in Rome, Seneca would most assuredly have heard of his message of kindness.

I love what the Dalai Lama is credited with saying: “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” Of course, it is! However, as Maya Angelou cautioned, “it takes courage to be kind.”

Courage to stand up, as Jesus did, against racism, antisemitism, bullies on any playground, and hatred, wherever it exists, even when shown by those who claim faith, moral or ethnic superiority, and who seem to thump a Bible very different from our own. 

The covenant of kindness is not a one-sided gift to us. It is a commandment and is to be dispensed on behalf of a loving God through us. 

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” Aesop


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