Mar 022015
 
I am pretty sure, “Now, be kind please”, comes out of my mouth everyday as my girls maneuver the challenges that “getting along with others” poses.  This week we take on the challenge to show others the love of Jesus by being kind to them.

Our #2 1 Corinthians 13 Love attribute this week is:  “LOVE IS KIND”.

Webster’s defines the word, “Kind or Kindness”, for us:
  • the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate
  • an act of kind assistance

Friends, here are some like minded words for kindness to further expand our mission this week:

affection, warmth,gentleness, concern, care;

consideration, helpfulness, thoughtfulness, unselfishness, selflessness,altruism, compassion, sympathy, understanding, big-heartedness, benevolence, benignity, friendliness, hospitality, neighborliness;
generosity, magnanimity, charitableness, mercy, service, grace
And to follow up with some words opposite to showing kindness.  (In other words, what NOT to do this week):
coldheartedness, hard-heartedness, inhumanity, inhumanness,mercilessness, pitilessness, rude, callousness, coldness, disinterest, indifference, unconcern;cruelty, harshness; animosity, antipathy, dislike, hatred, hostility

My heart tells me the love of Jesus for me, which spills out onto others in a kind way means action on my part.  The above definition says an “ACT” of kindness.  Kindness involves moving myself in such close proximity to another that there is a service performed for them.  If I shut myself and my love for Jesus in my room it is pretty hard to rub shoulders with friends, neighbors, the poor and needy.  And kindness requires reaching out to others-it may be nonverbally, verbally, or through an act of service that causes the individual to feel Seen.  Loved.  Cared for.  Listened to.  Provided for.  Considered.  Helped.  

Of all the opposite’s to kindness, the words, “unconcern and rude”, hit too close to home for me.  I say something in a defensive spirit to my husband and it comes out as a jabbing put down.  In fact it is a downright rude, manipulative, prideful thing to say.  Not kind.  I don’t make eye contact with the checker who always checks me out at the grocery store but only tend to putting items on the belt.  There is no excuse for my unconcern for them.  Not kind.

Of all the like minded words to kindness, the words “consideration and selflessness” were highlighted in my mind and spirit.  How much of my day do I consider self rather than consider another-unfortunately the “me monster” is priority more than I would like.  My needs, desires, comforts, schedule, frustrations, pain, good news are at the forefront of my mind.  This week, my prayer is that we would consider less of ourselves and more of others.  To be filled so much with the loving kindness of Jesus, our Lord, that we can’t help but extend His kindness to those we rub shoulders with.

Quotes/Verses to motivate us towards showing kindness this week:

  • “Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise You.”  Psalm 63:3
  • “Don’t you realize that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?”  Romans 2:4
  • “A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.”  William Arthur Ward
  • “Beginning today, treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight.  Extend to them all the care, kindness and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward.  Your life will never be the same again.”  Og Mandino
  • “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”  Aesop
  • “Kindness, I’ve discovered, is everything in life.”  Isaac Bashevis Singer
  • “Kindness is loving people more than they deserve.”  Joseph Joubert
  • “A little thought and a little kindness are often worth more than a great deal of money.”  John Ruskin

 

Jillian

Jillian

© 2012 Standing on Peace

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Feb 242015
 

I couldn’t be patient.  This week has been a processing/evaluating myself week.  Have you ever had one of those?  It’s one in which every activity, response, and thought is met with consideration as to the why behind it.  “Why am I reacting so angry right now?  Why is this person frustrating me so much?  Why can I not get past my own stuff and hurried self to look the checker in the eye?”   And as these, what seemed to be character flaws arose, I realized I am not up for this “Love it up”challenge.

And then I realized the answer to the why’s.  I was relying on my own strength and power to love like Jesus loves.  There is no way I can be patient like Jesus, unless I allow the fruits of His Holy Spirit inside me to do it.

Here’s where you and I MUST begin this challenge.  GOD LOVES YOU AND ME!  For those of you who are thinking, well, that’s obvious, go with me for a minute.

The God who created the world.  Who is ALL powerful.  ALL perfect.  Over ALL.  Loves you.  Stop.  Rest.  Close your eyes and time yourself for 60 seconds to only think on this one reality.

Be still and know that He is God.  And that there is NOTHING you can do or not do to make this God STOP.  Loving.  You.  Now.  And ALWAYS.

To know about God’s love is one thing, to believe it is another.  We can so fall into Satan’s lies of negating the love God has for us when we are in a trial, questioning our current circumstances, question God’s character, have unfulfilled expectations, have been waiting for too long, are wrestling with our inadequacies or have lost hope.  These are ESPECIALLY the times we as God’s children, who believe in His Son Jesus, to rise to faith in the true promises of God’s Word.

Will you believe this truth today that God loves you?  And so much so that He sent His fifth child, no, not fifth, His ONLY Son to die for you?  If this is the truth you need to hang out in for the next 15 weeks and take in all the attributes as a better understanding of His great love for you, do it friend!  Because each of these 15 attributes of love in 1 Corinthians 13 explain God’s love for us.

It is only when I am holding onto, being filled with God’s love that I can rely on it.  And when I can rely on it, go to the bank with it, that it propels me to love Him back and love other’s through Him.  He then gives me the strength and ability to overcome my fleshly, hurried, impatient self – And so we know and rely on (or believe) the love God has for us.  God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.  1 John 4:16

A song was also at the forefront of my mind all week.  It’s one I sing to my little girls every night (mainly because my Mom started singing it to them and they wouldn’t let me not sing it to them as well).  The song couldn’t be more simple, but couldn’t be more crucial for our own personal, deep, walking through the day reality.  “Oh, how I love Jesus, Oh, how I love Jesus, Oh how I love Jesus….because He first loved me.”

I began to acknowledge 3 realities I must lean into in this “Love it up” challenge.

  • FIRST-Just like the song,  I need take stock in the truth that Jesus loved me first and loves me just as I am (1 John 4:11, Romans 5:8).
  •  SECOND-The only way I can love others with the love of Jesus is by following the first commandment to love God with my heart, soul, mind and strength (Matthew 22:37).
  • THIRD-When I am receiving God’s poured out love for me and loving Him in return there is a supernatural outpouring of love that flows out of me to others.  I have the strength and power to love the unlovable (Ephesians 5:1-2).

So within this above reality and below reality of patience defined I want to extend the “Love is patient” for one more week.  We then can rest in and grasp the love of Christ for us and confidently walk in His “patience” this week.

Love it up-15 in 15 Challenge Details:

Within a given week I will write about/define the given love attribute early on Monday.  Then we will have Monday to Monday to pray through, act on, write on it.  On Wednesday of this same week, I will recap the previous week’s love attribute/give you a download of my “love journey”.

Love is Patient Defined:

Webster’s defines the word “patient” as:

  • “able to remain calm and not become annoyed when waiting for a long time or when dealing with problems or difficult people; able or willing to bear”
  •  “done in a careful way over a long period of time without hurrying; not hasty”
  • “Bearing pains without complaint”

Likeminded words to keep at the forefront of our mind this week are:

We can also know when we are not being patient by recognizing what the opposite of being patient looks like:

The definition/thought that was highlighted to me above was the “able or willing to bear” and the “not hasty”.  To be with people.  And wait.  To endure and bear hard, painful stuff with others.  To talk with others in spite of their incapabilities, insecurities, and inadequacies.  To respond without anger.  To be still.  To not hurry, hurry, hurry.  24/7.  This is our call of the week friends.  To know and BELIEVE in the love God has for us and to spill out His “patience” everywhere we walk.

 

 

Jillian


Jillian

© 2012 Standing on Peace

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