Have you ever spent time with someone who’s unpleasant to be around because they’re always complaining and finding fault in everything … even when life seems to be rainbows and butterflies? Sometimes it’s difficult to be around people like that. Now, imagine the kindest person you’ve ever met. What’s the difference? What is it that makes that person so kind? I bet if we were to take a poll, most of us would want to be more like the person who’s kind. The Bible has quite a bit to say about kindness. Let’s explore some key passages below.
What does the Bible say about kindness?
When we think about being kind, our reflection should begin with God Himself. A beautiful passage that shows this is Titus 3:4-6:
But when the kindness of and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. (NIV)
Consider also Ephesians 2:7-9,
And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. (NIV)
These couple of passages are jam-packed with great things! God’s kindness is the cause of:
- Jesus coming into the world
- the cleansing of our hearts by the Holy Spirit
- our eternal hope
Our salvation is not because we’ve done any good works, but it’s because of God’s grace—an expression of God’s kindness.
Throughout the Bible we are commanded and exhorted to be kind (Gal 5:22; Eph 4:32; Col 3:12), even to our enemies (Lk 6:35). The reason for that is because God Himself is kind, even to those who are ungrateful and wicked (Lk 6:36).
How do I live a kind life?
Now that we’ve looked at what the Bible says about being kind, let’s consider some steps to help us as we seek to practice kindness in our lives.
- Take some time this week and reflect on God’s kindness in our lives. Reread the passages we looked at above (Tit 3:4-6; Eph 2:7-9; and Lk 6:35-36).
- Examine your interactions with people this week and ask yourself: in what ways have I been kind to others? In what ways have I been unkind?
- Ask God’s Spirit to show you areas in your life where you need to improve on being kind to others, and then ask for help to overcome those areas.
- List out possible ways that you might be kind to others, and then set some goals for your week on who you might reach out to others with kindness in your life.
- Pray and ask God to show His kindness through you this week.
May the Lord be with you this week as you seek to be kind to others!