If someone asked you what is one quality in life that makes life work, how would you respond?
Dick Foth likes to ask thought provoking questions like this. He says that one time, he asked several people this very question and they both had the same answer.
“Without hesitation, both of them responded with the word kindness.”
When he heard this response from both of his friends, Dick was reminded of a specific Scripture passage from Romans.
“When you read Romans 2, the question is asked, ‘don’t you remember, it is the kindness of God that leads us to repentance.’ So I think that kindness is the lubricant for life, if you will.”
Dick believes that kindness makes life work because it leads us to seek forgiveness from God and others. This leads to healthy relationships that flourish. Even in the marketplace, Dick says the same concept applies.
“In the marketplace, if you are fair and you are kind, that’s what they are looking for.”
Dick says it’s important to understand that kindness is not weak and it’s not the same thing as nice.
“Kind is not a soft word. When Jesus went to the cross that was the kindest thing He ever did for me. Sometimes kind can be confrontational, but it doesn’t have to be mean. Kindness has this truth-telling component that allows us to encourage people who are going down the wrong road.”
When it comes to confrontation, we can often think it’s unkind to confront anyone. However, Dick says exactly the opposite is the case.
“I recently preached a sermon about the prophets who essentially came to call people back to the God whose name they had forgotten. The only people who warn you are people who care. People who don’t care, just let you go off the cliff. Kindness also has a warning component to it, every parent knows that.”
Today, ask God to show you what true kindness is and how you can express it in your own life.
Dick Foth is an author, storyteller, and popular speaker. He holds a master’s degree from Wheaton College Graduate School and a doctorate from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. Dick also serves on the teaching teams of four congregations, including the multi-site National Community Church pastored by Mark Batterson in Washington, D. C.
Key Scripture: Philippians 1:9-11
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