Would you like to change the world around you? Then make it a habit to do three acts of kindness every day.
Do it consistently for a year, and you’ll bless those around you with 1,000 acts of kindness.
Since kindness is contagious, many of the people you touch may turn around and be kind to someone else … as illustrated in a video that’s been viewed by over sixteen million people …
What Is Kindness?
Aristotle defined kindness as “Helpfulness towards someone in need, not in return for anything, nor for the advantage of the helper himself, but for that of the person helped.”
Michael Card raises the bar even higher: “Kindness is when the person from whom I have the right to expect nothing, gives me everything.”
God Demonstrates the Ultimate Form of Kindness
The gospel is the ultimate act of kindness. It is the good news that God is kind even to ungrateful and evil people (Luke 6:35; Rom. 5:8).
Although we deserve something worse than nothing (eternal judgment!), God gives us the ultimate gift: the sacrifice of his only Son, who laid down his life to pay for our sins and give us eternal life (John 3:16; Col. 1:21-22).
God Calls Us to Imitate His Kindness
Since we have been saved through God’s kindness and adopted as his dearly loved children, he calls us to imitate his kindness toward the people around us.
“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience” (Col. 3:12).
“Love is patient and kind” (1 Cor. 13:4).
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Eph. 4:32).
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Gal. 5:22-23).
Practical Ways to Show Kindness
As illustrated in the video above, and taught in the Bible itself, there are many ways that you can show kindness to other people today.
- Give a word of encouragement (1Thess. 5:14).
- Comfort someone who is sick or injured (Luke 10:30-35).
- Help to meet others’ material needs (Rom. 12:20)
- Draw attention to personal and spiritual growth (1Cor. 1:4-6).
- Commend success (Matt. 25:21).
- Bring good news to others (Prov. 25:25).
- Cancel a debt (Matt. 18:23-27).
- Forgive a wrong (Eph. 4:32).
- Gently correct a friend (Psalm 141:5).
- Pray for those who mistreat you (Luke 6:27-28).
An Inspiring Example of Kindness
A few days ago, Melonie Bailey, a high school senior running a cross country race in North Dakota, provided a vivid example of kindness by carrying an injured competitor across the finish line. Click here to see this inspiring story.
Melanie’s words illustrate the very essence of kindness: “All I could think about was that she was in a lot of pain and I wanted to help her.”
You’ll meet a lot of people today who are experiencing their own kind of pain, discouragement, or need. Reach out to just three of them … and then do the same thing tomorrow and the next day.
A year from now, you’ll have modeled the kindness of Christ—and helped to change the world—through 1,000 acts of kindness.
– Ken Sande
- Think of three ways that others have shown kindness to you. How could you imitate that kindness toward other people in your life?
- Proverbs 21:21 promises that “Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness will find life, righteousness, and honor.” How does kindness lead to “life, righteousness, and honor”?
- Romans 2:4 teaches that “God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance.” How did God’s kindness lead to your repentance from sin? How could your kindness toward others lead them toward repentance?
Permission to distribute: Please feel free to download, print, or electronically share this message in its entirety for non-commercial purposes with as many people as you like.
© 2014 Ken Sande
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