Love

Just Because I am Polite; Does Not Make Me Kind.

I must start off by saying…this weeks study for me was so simple that it seemed complex and difficult!  Why is that?  Is it because I see God and His principles to be more complicated and “deep” than they really are?  Is it because our society is all about telling people “how you feel” , voice your “opinions”, stand up for your “freedom of speech” no matter how brutal, unpleasant, judgmental, wrong and unkind our statements may be?

I have been thinking (hard) about what it means to be kind, (Which is love),  and the more I thought about it the more I got confused!  All that came to my mind was…”If you can’t say something nice, then don’t say it!”  God, there HAS to be more to it than this!

I have always considered myself to be a kind person!  When I meet someone I always say, “Hi,  My name is Jennifer, it’s so nice to meet you!”  “I like your shirt, your hair is so pretty, etc.”  I always smile, if they need help I help them, if they seem sad I encourage them…of course I am kind!   Then I realized that is not necessarily kindness, that is politeness and there is a difference. I have been searching my heart this week and really asking God for insight on kindness- as He intends and what “being kind”- actually means.  Just because I am polite,  does not make me kind.  Kindness is a characteristic of LOVE that comes out of a pure heart and I don’t always keep my heart “in check.”   This is an area that God began to really deal with me,  on a very personal level.

Lesson #1:  The tongue has the power of life and death!  (Proverbs 18:21).  Life and DEATH!  DEATH?  Yes, DEATH (meaning goodbye, you’re done,  it’s over, flatlined, YOU’RE DEAD)!  What I  say matters and the SPIRIT behind what I say matters and has the power to kill and destroy!  I realized that when my sentences end with  “I’m Joking”,  “C’mon I was kidding” or “Bless their heart,”  then the statement before the candy coated ending,  did not have the spirit of true LOVE-as God intends, (which is kind).  I usually only make these “unkind” statements/jokes around my husband, family and friends, so is that really so bad?  YES!  Who I am around people that I am most comfortable with,  is who I really am!  Do I truly want my words to kill and destroy the ones that I care about the most?  OF COURSE NOT!  Could that scripture also be telling me that when I speak words of  negativity, death and destruction that my spirit will also weaken and die?  Yes, I believe so!  I must choose to STOP, SLOW DOWN and THINK before I SPEAK!  I also realized that I needed to be praying a little different in the morning and focus more on the issues of MY heart.  If my heart is inline with the heart of Jesus, then I would NOT make such remarks, even if they are candy coated as a “joke.”  True LOVE- as God intends, (which is kind), speaks LIFE, UPLIFTS, ENCOURAGES and CHOOSES to speak to the BEST in people, not their shortcomings, failures and weaknesses. “Acts of kindness are beautiful but we must not forget that words of kindness are powerful!”

New Morning Prayer #1

“God teach me to think before I speak.  When my thoughts are unkind teach me to keep my mouth shut!  Then show me the condition of my heart and reveal the true root of my sin,  forgive me and teach me true LOVE- as You intend.

Lesson #2: (Luke 30-37) “The story of The Good Samaritan”:  Ok God,  YES!  Of course I would have stopped and helped the man, that was laying in the street and in  “need”.  I have compassion for people in need, I always have…..so I am kind, YAY!!!!!   Then God said, NO.  Jennifer, do you realize that it is easier for you to show kindness to strangers than the ones closest to you?  You do not always have true LOVE- as I intend, (which is kind), in your heart.  WHOAH!!!!!!!!  Ok God!  Wow,   You are SO RIGHT!  It is much easier to show kindness to and around strangers!  Why, God? (You know it’s amazing that when you talk to God and ask him to reveal things to you…He does).  He showed me that it is easier for me to show strangers, “in need”,  kindness because I have pity but pity only leads to pride.  I must begin to see others the way God sees them!  The Holy Spirit is teaching me that true LOVE- as He intends, (which is  kind),  is without judgement and certainly without pity: but NEVER without mercy!  The same mercy that My Savior has shown me! 

Romans 3:23   For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.   Mathew 7: 1-3  “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others.  The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.

New Morning Prayer #2

God teach me to see everyone like You see them, never with judgement.  Instill in my heart true LOVE- as You intend, that is kind and shows Mercy to others, like You have shown me.

This study has shown me that God is actually very clear, direct, simple and much easier to understand.  We make it seem SO difficult and complex, but it’s not….it’s simply the message of LOVE.  We can obtain true LOVE- as God intends if  we just allow His spirit to flow freely through us!   Yes, I said it…ALLOW….it is up to US, everyday and is a CHOICE to open our hearts and ask God to guide our every thoughts (first) and  (then) words and actions.

Ok, I’m Done! This revelation was brutal; However, it has been very inspiring and exactly what I needed, in order to grow as a follower of Christ, as I am asking God to place in my heart the understanding of true LOVE- as He intends.

 

Let’s CHOOSE to live each day encouraging one another, rooting for each other, wishing each other success and be happy for one another!  Let’s CHOOSE forgiveness, instead of judgement. Let’s CHOOSE to speak LIFE and NOT death. Let’s CHOOSE to see the BEST in people and as God sees them!  Let’s CHOOSE KINDNESS, (which is LOVE).

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5 thoughts on “Just Because I am Polite; Does Not Make Me Kind.

  1. Steven Paul, a Christ follower... says:

    I really love this, Jennifer! Thanks for visiting and following my blog. I’ll be back to yours too…

    Steven

  2. Shelley Stone says:

    wow, another thought provoking message. I searched every dictionary I have for some revelation on the word ‘kind.’ Could not find what I was looking for. Ultimately its always about letting Jesus’ spirit flow freely through us. One thing that I’ve yet to discover, is the difference between and unbeliever showing the characteristics of the fruit of the spirit – an unbeliever can show and feel love, even unconditionally if they’re ‘religious’ and do good ‘works of the flesh’, they can feel joy and contentment, achieve peace, patience, goodness, self control, etc. So I wondered, what is the difference between an unbelievers’ and the believers’ LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GENTLENESS, MEEKNESS, SELF CONTROL’ …. many of the characteristics of the fruit of the spirit (Galatians 2:20) are also mentioned in the 1 Corinthians love chapter. Well it would take a whole book to document my discoveries and things I’ve learned over the years about those differences, but the thing that kept coming to my mind as I prayed over this particular blog session, was examples of the opposite of kindness, in order to see kindness. One particular example I’d like to share….I once had a cat who was getting old and had cancer. She vomited a lot, and sometimes on an expensive piece of furniture or rug. It made my hubby angry and it made me feel compassion for the cat. After all, we can buy a new rug but can’t buy a new cat. (well you can, but not a duplicate of this particular one, which was like my baby!)…..I think kindness, lovingkindness as mentioned so often in the Psalms, is a form of compassion and tenderness in spite of someone grossing us out or showing us their bad side. Its the opposite of cold heartedness. When my kitty vomited, I would rush to her side, speak to her softly, gently hold her sides, and tell her I loved her and everything was going to be ok. Oftentimes this occured in the bathroom, as defecating seemed to hurt her and cause her to throw up. (sorry for the gross graphics but hold on, there’s a lesson coming)…..she came to associate my lovingkindess with the bathroom, and soon I found her rushing and running to the bathroom, licking her little kitty lips, to do her vomiting! I would always praise her and comfort her during those times. I couldn’t believe she was so smart! During that season of life, the verse from Isaiah 66:13 kept coming to my mind… “As a mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you.” I think this is a good verse displaying God’s lovingkindess to us, and we can learn to share it with each other.
    Another amazing lesson I learned from this kitty, is that when I had to groom her, she hated it….but I had to get out the loose hairs or she would groom herself and that hair was bad for the tummy. Instead of running away from me, the one who was allowing her painful situation, she put her arms around my neck and held on for dear life. It was that incident that gave me a real life lesson in how we are to respond to God when we don’t like whats going on. Instead of running away, we should cling to Him, for He has reasons we can’t see sometimes for allowing painful things to happen in our lives. (this momentary light affliction works for us an eternal weight of glory – 2 Cor. 4:17-18).
    The ultimate kindness God showed to us was sending His Son to die for us, while we were yet sinners. Thats the kind of love-as-God-intends that Jennifer talks about and is striving for, as should we all. It says somewhere in the Bible that Jesus’ death was a fragrant offering to God. (forget where).
    I never understood that until (hold on people, it gets a little gross here) my little cats stool became so smelly due to her intestinal cancer, that I had to light a stick of incense just to go in the bathroom to clean up her mess in the litter box. One day it occured to me, that that was like Jesus’ death being a fragrant aroma….it allowed Him to come near to us, in our sinful condition, which is so appaling to God that the only thing that could cover it was death (in the Old Testament, of all the animal sacrifices) and in the New Testament, Jesus’ once for all sacrifice. Sin is so appalling to God that He requires death. That is so heavy isn’t it?
    So I learned from this something about His kindness. it isn’t like human good works of kindness, like helping someone across the street, although thats a very nice thing to do. Spiritual kindess, as God intended, is sacrificial. He gave everything in order to be able to fellowship with his creation and show His lovingkindness to us. And when we observe His acts of lovingkindness, we can see how to show it to one another.
    I’m sorry for such a long post and I hope someone gets something from it (other than being grossed out!).

  3. I think we forget that what we think, how we act, and what we say are all choices we make. Being a follower of Christ, we are taught to be the light and sometimes we fail, but as we grow, I believe we can make a difference. Taking the high road to show compassion in an all about me world can be hard. But I’m pretty sure dying on the cross wasn’t easy, but wow, talk about the ultimate martyr for love!! Thoroughly enjoying your blog!! Blessings to you sister!!

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