“Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God's kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” (Romans 2:4)
A study of the gospels reveals Jesus’ approach in reaching people. He spoke in kindness, in contrast to the brash demoralizing style of the religious leaders of the day. Later the Apostle Paul detailed his own approach to communicating with people, an approach that also utilized kindness (2 Corinthians 6:6), even to opponents (2 Timothy 2:24-25). People respond to kindness, not to meanness.
Prior to our own coming to God, He softens our hearts. One way He does this is to demonstrate His kindness to us. The verse from Romans above indicates it leads us to repentance. While He indeed convicts us of our sin and need to repent, He then presents the kindness of Christ as quite attractive to us.
Parents need to rear their children with instruction, discipline and boundaries. But children also need to know they have a caring parent they can turn to. The Holy Spirit presents Jesus Christ to sinners as a merciful Savior. They can indeed turn to Him as the cure for sin. In like manner, we to need to demonstrate care and kindness to those we want to reach.
Four Ways to Show Kindness to People
1. Be polite to them.
In a society growing increasingly rude and discourteous, let’s demonstrate the opposite. Let people in a hurry go ahead of us in line at the store. Refuse to retaliate when drivers cut us off. We may not win people with each act of kindness, but we will certainly turn them off with rudeness.
2. Listen to them.
More and more, people need someone to listen to them. In an age growing more unfamiliar with Christianity, we need to take the time to listen to questions about the faith. We also need to hear people out when they voice objections. Your listening ear may be the tool God uses to bring them home.
3. Do something for them.
Everyone seems to have a rough go of it today. As the stresses of life increase, so does self-interest. What an impact could be made as we practice kindness by doing something tangible for someone else.
4. Pray for them.
Praying for people is an act of kindness we can do anytime. We can do this randomly and for anyone. Pray for people who hurt, people who suffer, and people who need a touch from God. Your prayers will make a difference.
Remember, the kindness of God leads people to repentance, and the kindness of His people will only lead to good things.
Posted on Mon, March 13, 2017
by Sam Petitfils