My daughter has a wonderful trait that sometimes get her into trouble. When she was young, it seemed that every stray cat had a home at our house. One time we had over a dozen cats. Now, that’s a few too many, don’t you think?
I’m not exactly fond of cats, but I sure do love my daughter, and I really appreciate the fact that she is so kind. She’s married and has her own family now, but she’s still very kind and compassionate—only now she brings home stray people. She has a special heart for abused women and children, bearing their hurt as though it were her own.
In 2 Corinthians 13:4, God describes love in this way: “Love suffers long and is kind.” In other words, if you’re a child of God through faith in Christ, you will have God’s love in your heart, and that means your life will be characterized by kindness.
The word “kind” used here is the Greek word chrēsteuetai that means “to show oneself useful.” It is to act benevolently – to be gracious and merciful.
Are you a kind person, or do you strike out in malice and ill-will? Too many people think only of themselves. They do not make themselves useful for the sake of others.
When I was a kid, my mom did the laundry for her family of five children on an old ringer-washing machine. It was a lot of work and took a lot of her time. Then one day a Sears truck pulled up to the house and delivered a brand new self-spin washing machine. My mother was flabbergasted. We had not ordered it, and we certainly didn’t have enough money to pay for it. But the delivery man insisted it was paid for, and the address on the delivery slip was our house. Later we discovered who it was that did that for my mom. It was a couple in our church who were relatively poor. They didn’t have a new washing machine in their house, but they wanted my mom to have one.
Now that’s kindness! Making oneself useful to others – even at great expense to yourself. Now you know the real meaning of the word.
Today, why don’t you brighten somebody’s day! A little kindness goes a long way.