Friday, January 23, 2015

Modeling Kindness

Modeling Kindness
Scripture Reading: Colossians 3:1-17
“Since God chose you to be the holy people whom he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (Col. 3:12 NLT)
Modeling the act of kindness took place when Jesus got up at the “last supper,” took off his tunic, girded himself with a towel and with a basin of water began to wash the disciples’ feet. Can you picture in your mind the look on the disciples’ faces? Nothing had prepared them for this event. They were too busy arguing who would sit at the right hand of Jesus in his kingdom to do menial labor. Peter was so dumbfounded that he asked, “Lord, why are you going to wash my feet?” (Jn. 13:6 NLT) Jesus replied, “You don’t understand now why I am doing it; someday you will.” (v.7) Jesus modeled servitude that calls upon us to show humility and kindness to others.
     My mother was a person who loved to show kindness. I still remember her taking food to sick neighbors, feeding the homeless hobos who came to our door, watching children while their parents worked, and serving on committees of local charities. She modeled for us children what acts of kindness meant even though she laid no claim to being a Christian. We kids learned from watching our mother’s heart how God blesses those who are willing to give a helping hand to others in need.
     I found special joy during my early retirement years in helping mow the lawns of other elderly people who were either widows or incapacitated and couldn’t do it themselves. The Holy Spirit of God gives every believer service gifts and I have found that he has given me the gift of helps. What a joy it is to serve others!
     When I think of women in the Bible who modeled kindness, the first person that comes to mind is Ruth, the Moabite. She made the choice to stay with Naomi, and help her on her return to Judah. She gathered grain in the fields at harvest to provide food for the family. Another person that comes to mind is Tabitha. Luke speaks of her in Acts 9:36 by saying, “She was always doing kind things for others and helping the poor.”
     What are some ways you and I can model kindness? Here are just a few: leave a large tip at a restaurant, plow or shovel snow for a neighbor, make a dinner for a needy family, leave grocery gift cards in someone’s mailbox, or take cookies to a nursing home. What spiritual gift has the Holy Spirit given to you? Is it helps, hospitality, giving, teaching, or loving? Whatever it is, use it to glorify God, and to bless the lives of others.

Prayer: Dear Lord, help me model a servitude attitude that is willing to reach out to meet the needs of others. 

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