2. The Bible Teaches Treating Others with Kindness
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One of the first verses I ever memorized at the urging of my mother (Ephesians 4:32) says,” Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you."
Kindness does not come naturally to any of us, which is why this verse became the mantra of my mother to me growing up. I still need constant reminders about how I am to treat others. Now as a mom, I’ve begun reciting the same verse to my own children.
In Ephesians, Paul is prescribing that the church show kindness to one another and to the broader world around them.
Kindness is defined as being friendly, generous, and considerate. It does not mean you can’t have a differing opinion or truth from others. But it does define your approach when tackling issues that can incite a passionate response.
Being friendly means you are approachable, others feel that they can engage with you.
Generous means you want to give to those around you. Give them love, offer them the truth, and take a moment to see what their needs are.
Consideration implies a pause, a willingness to listen, and take into account the feelings and perspectives of others.
Colossians 3:12 says, “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” This is what the people of God should be defined by. What a beautiful picture of a people that exude grace and love!
This should be what we strive for others to see in us when we approach those who are different from ourselves.
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