I just posted the other day about kindness, but it’s on my mind again.
I’ve been thinking about kindness a lot because I believe it lies at the heart of the Gospel. It’s why one of my favorite verses is Romans 2:4, which says it’s “God’s kindness that leads us to repentance.”
Have you ever met a single believer who became a Christian as a result of judgment, condemnation, or ridicule? Me neither. It’s the kindness of God that opens people’s hearts to the message of God.
That’s an important truth for those of us who want to reach the culture in the name of Christ.
I often wonder to myself, “Am I reflecting God’s kindness, or am I just being nice?” Scripture never exhorts us to be nice. Nice is how you respond to strangers – a thin veneer of kindness, but with nothing of substance underneath.
We need the kindness described in Micah 6:8, which tells us to “love mercy” – often translated as “love kindness.” When kindness flows from the depths of our hearts and is infused with God’s Spirit, it becomes one of the most powerful illustrations of Jesus’ character.
But kindness often gets lost in the fray of life. It’s easy to be kind to the barista when he or she gets your coffee order right or to be kind when your family is in harmony. It’s more difficult when there’s dissension or disagreement. But that’s when kindness is more important than ever.
With kindness, we can hold to our convictions, yet season our words with grace. It enables us to be open to conversations to which we might otherwise turn a deaf ear.
I like the way our guest on today’s program, Dr. Barry Corey, describes it: “Kindness is living with a firm center and soft edges.”
Dr. Corey has been the president of Biola University since 2007. Today he’ll provide us with great insights about how to live with kindness in a culture that is often at odds with it and believers who strive to exhibit it.