Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians 3:12
“Kindness often gets thrown in with niceness, manners and etiquette. But it’s altogether something different. Those things are of earth. Kindness is of heaven. Kindness isn’t quaint. It’s not for image maintenance or keeping feathers unruffled. Kindness is love manifest in action. Kindness is in fact so inseparable from love that early Bible translators coined a single term: lovingkindness. “Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.” Love is patient. Love is kind.
Etiquette is about rules; learn them, follow them. Kindness isn’t always so obvious. It looks different toward different people at different times. To the hard-hearted religious leaders Jesus said, “Brood of vipers.” Kindness. To the rich young ruler, “Sell all you own.” Kindness. To Peter, “Get behind me, Satan.” Kindness.
It’s easy to recognize Jesus’ tender words and actions as kind. These other moments can seem brash, mean almost. But we must see Jesus always speaking with the fire of pure love burning in His eyes. He did nothing simply to provoke, nothing from fear, nothing to prove anything, nothing out of woundedness. All was from an unshakable awareness of His belovedness and for the eternal good of another.”
Brian Morykon in “Kindness Isn’t Quaint” on Renovare blog dated 10 March 2017.
Jesus was generous with kindness. He told everyone what they needed to hear because He cared about “the eternal good” of each one. His words, as such, likely often came across as shocking because His aim was to wake them up, convicting because He wanted them to change directions, or even downright politically incorrect because they were leading people astray. No wonder the famous saying says, “Kill them with kindness!”
As His followers, we too must be generous with kindness. But perhaps there is a bigger question for each of us to consider first. What would Jesus say to each of us? Sit quietly with the Lord for five minutes and ask the Holy Spirit to open your ears to hear. Do what He says to you first, then ask God to fill you with lovingkindness to share with others, which always has their “eternal good” in view.