Are you a kind Christian? Followers of Jesus should be the kindest people. I know we know what kindness means, but practically speaking, what does it look like? I am afraid that sometimes we need to refresh our memory as kindness escapes even the most mature Christians.
True kindness is Spirit-produced; that is, it is supernatural. It is a generous orientation of our hearts toward people regardless of whether they deserve it. We see this supernatural kindness in God, whose kindness is meant to lead us to repentance (Romans 2:4). Our supreme goal as Christians is to imitate Christ, the “exact imprint of his [God’s] nature” (Hebrews 1:3). Therefore, we should see that Christ was the kindest of all and strive to be like Him. Knowing that God has saved us by His grace in Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9), this marvelous salvation should propel us forward to be kind Christians.
Practically, kindness means not reacting to a snide comment but instead responding with kindness, even if it means the other person “wins” the argument. Remember, we’re not looking to win arguments; we’re looking to win people to Jesus. Argumentation doesn’t lead anybody to see the beauty of Jesus.
Additionally, being kind means swallowing our pride and not succumbing to the temptation of having the last word. Do you have a sibling? If so, then you know this from firsthand experience. Every time you two argued, it was your mission to have the last word—and your sibling felt the same way. Having the last word gave you a sense of pride and one-upsmanship. Eventually, you start arguing about who will have the last word instead of what you were arguing about originally.
With Jesus, however, there is no arguing. Jesus, the divine Son of God—the Beginning and the End—will have the last word whether you get the last word or not. This fruit of the Spirit is immensely underrated. We need to be kind people. So, believer . . . are you kind to others?
This devotional was taken from my book Gospel Smugness: Displaying Christlike Character in Evangelism.