Kindness is love in action, love translated into simple everyday terms. It’s being considerate of others. It’s living the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”1 It’s turning a blind eye to the flubs and foibles of others. It’s being as tenderhearted and forgiving toward others as God is with you.2
Kindness generates goodwill. Your kind words and kind deeds tell others that their happiness and well-being are important to you, and that makes them want to respond in like manner. Kindness is one of the hardest things to give away, because it’s nearly always returned. Kindness costs nothing, but can accomplish so much. A kind smile or a kind word can make all the difference in the world to someone who’s having a hard day. A little bit of love goes such a long way!
Kindness is a language that everyone understands. As Christians, we are ambassadors of God’s love to others; the kindness we show conveys God’s love and care, and helps draw and win them to Him.
(“Kindness—The Irresistible Fruit” is adapted from the Get Activated book God’s Gifts.)
The North Wind and the Sun
—From Aesop's Fables
The sun and the wind once had a conversation, in which the boisterous and argumentative wind contended that he was the stronger of the two.
“I’ll prove it!” said the wind. “Do you see the old man down there? I bet I can get his coat off him quicker than you can!”
So the sun sighed and hid behind a cloud, and the wind blew and blew until it was almost a tornado. But the harder it blew, the tighter the old man clutched his coat to him. Finally the wind gave up and calmed down.
Then the sun came out from behind the cloud and smiled kindly on the old man. After only a short while the man mopped his brow and pulled off his coat.
The sun had shown the wind that warmth and kindness were stronger than fury and force.
It needs so little sympathy
To cheer a weary way,
Sometimes a little kindness
Lights up a dreary day;
A very simple, friendly word
May hope and strength impart,
Or just an understanding smile
Revive some fainting heart;
And, like a sudden sunlit ray,
Lighting a darkened room,
A sunny spirit may beguile
The deepest depths of gloom.
1. Matthew 7:12
2. See Ephesians 4:32.