The Lost Fruit – Kindness I have recently found myself being concerned about the lack of kindness in the world. The fruit of the Spirit is listed in the Bible and part of that fruit is “kindness”. Many Christians could list the Fruit of the Spirit found in Galatians from memory. If you haven’t memorized that passage, it can be found in Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self-control; against such there is no law.”
In the middle of this passage we find “Kindness”. Kindness could easily be overlooked, but it’s there, held between long-suffering and goodness. Kindness is as important as anything listed in Galatians 5. Mark Twain said, “Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” The one thing that concerns me the most is when I hear well meaning Christians (and often leaders) claim to speak the truth and yet they do it in an unkind spirit.
Many times we wonder why the truth that we speak isn’t received or adhered to and perhaps it is because of the unkind spirit with which it is delivered. Truth delivered with the wrong spirit can leave people wounded. Although we may not be able to change people, we can change the way we treat them.
Have you ever gone to a restaurant or any public place and “people watched”? It is interesting to see how people interact with one another. Maybe God has sent someone across your path to simply show a smile and kindness to someone unknowingly going through the hardest time in their life. Maybe the store clerk or the waiter/waitress made a mistake and you feel justified in harshly correcting them. The correction is not the problem; however, the spirit in which it is done can make all the difference. Often the person that we are dealing with can’t hear the truth because our unkind attitude is screaming louder than our words. We can’t expect our children to treat others with kindness, if it is not properly modeled in front of them. Share God’s love and kindness with those you come in contact with. You might just change someone’s life.
By Shannon Tuten