I’m sure you are all familiar with Ellen DeGeneres recently urging others to simply be kind, even to those who you disagree with. I know many applaud her sentiment. In an age where we are so polarized and hostile to people who hold different beliefs, I certainly agree we should be kind to everyone. However, I thought this article was so interesting as the author makes a distinction between being kind and being nice. I certainly fall into the trap of thinking I am being kind to others when I’m really just being civil or polite. But as Christians, we are called to be more than just nice. We are called to be kind, (it’s a mark that we are bearing the fruit of the Spirit). “Niceness and kindness are not the same thing. Kindness requires intentional action.” Christ was intentional in showing us kindness by coming to earth, living a sinless life and dying on the cross for our sins. It is His kindness that leads us to repentance. (Ro. 2:4). So, let’s be more than civil and polite to those we come into contact with today–let’s be kind.
If Christians are to be salt and light in a society marked by division and debate, then we will need to push back not only against those who say kindness should be reserved for “the deserving,” but also against those who would water down kindness to nothing more than an attitude of “niceness.” What if, instead, we were like King David, taking the initiative: Who might I intentionally show kindness to today? Even more: Is there someone unexpected who I could bless?
[W]e show kindness to others on account of our love and commitment to Jesus. It’s Jesus’s love that motivates us to show kindness to the undeserving. So, for Jesus’s sake, be kind.[TGC]
I have incredible, godly parents who continually go out of their way to serve me and my family. I love spending time with them and talking to them. However, I will confess that sometimes I can become so self-absorbed in what I have going on and, well, myself, that I don’t take the time to honor them well. The author shares six easy ways adult children can show honor to their parents. I especially appreciated her suggestion to talk to them/really listen to what’s going on in their lives and pray regularly for them. Those are both areas that I need to grow in. I hope this article is as helpful for you as it was for me.
Adults tend to have their focus on their spouse, children and careers however we can often focus so much on these relationships that our parents can get sidelined. While it’s natural that the relationship with our parents will change as we get older and become independent of them, we are still instructed to honor them. We go from being so dependent on them as children to being able to function in life without them, and ways of honoring them will vary depending on our stage of life.[Servants of Grace]
In this article, the author lays out how Jesus’ temptation works both backwards and forwards. He explains that Jesus was tempted in the same way the accuser tempted Eve in the Garden; however, He was without sin. And just like Eve, we are tempted to disobey God and make ourselves our own little god. But Jesus’ temptation also works forward on our behalf. When we trust Christ His righteousness is imputed to us and we can withstand the temptation that we’re facing by His power. What an incredible and freeing truth to dwell on today!
We see in Adam’s fall our own sinfulness, but we see in Jesus’s obedience our righteousness. We are forgiven by his grace. We are filled by his grace. And we can withstand temptation by his grace (1 Cor. 10:13). Through faith, we even receive Christ’s perfect submission to the Father’s will as if it were our own! And at each point of temptation, when we set our minds to the perfect work of Christ, we find the strength to say “No” to the tempter and “Yes” to God’s glory.[TGC]
In college I was so diligent to memorize Scripture. I can’t tell you the countless times that I was facing an obstacle, an anxiety, or a temptation, and I would remember a verse or a passage of Scripture that was applicable. The Holy Spirit would bring the verse that I had memorized months or years prior to my mind just when I most needed it. But if we don’t memorize and meditate on God’s word then the Holy Spirit has nothing to bring to our minds in a time of trouble. This article was challenging for me as I have become lax about scripture memorization over the past few years. I hope it encourages you to make God’s word a priority as well.
When temptation comes our way–whether by our own thoughts or by external circumstances–having Scripture in our minds already prepares us to actively oppose sin.
If we don’t have it memorized and temptation comes, we may forgot the verse that reminds us that Christ is more satisfying, which in turn may give us away to our sin. Be diligent in memorizing Scripture![Theology and Life]
In this podcast, Nancy shares how we can love others and love God well when we abide in His love and rely on His power to love those we come into contact with.
We can’t love without Him, without His help. You can’t love God, you can’t love your mate, you can’t love your children, you can’t love your friends—not to speak of loving your enemies—without the love of God filling you and flowing through you.
Our love has boundaries, it has limits: “This far, no further!” But God’s love is endless. It knows no bounds. Our love is calculating. God’s loves is generous, its abundant, it defies logic . . . doesn’t it?