But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23)
The Fruit Of The Spirit Is Kindness
Of all the fruits of the Spirit that call for some complex understanding, the trait of kindness is least difficult to define. The tragedy is that so few people exercise this special part of the Christian life. Kindness is self-determined by the act of being a kind person in words, deeds and actions. Attitude is such an important part of being a person of kindness and this is an important part of the fruit of the Holy Spirit. If there is a greater need in the church today it is the portrait of those who are not sour faced, complaining, murmuring and grumpy people who are not happy about anything. They find it difficult to be kind to others or to speak kindly about others. Kindness is a trait of mildness in the manner of dealing with others. Politeness is a key ingredient of learning to be a kind person.
What is misunderstood about the character of kindness is that some suggest they were born with a certain attitude and that is who they are. In other words, their rough exterior defines who they are with no change needed. It is interesting that God includes in one of the fruits of the Spirit the need for kindness. This is a learned process that changes the heart of the gruff person to a person of thoughtfulness. Kindness is not an option; it is a command. All Christian’s must put off the old man of unkindness and put on the new man created in Christ Jesus that is kind to others. This is how the world should see the child of God.
When a man looks at all the ways the Lord has shown kindness with the sun, rain, food, clothing and daily provisions, he learns this kind of beneficence should be shown to others. Perfecting the character of the child of God is becoming more like the Father. He has shown His kindness through the blessings of the world and the spiritual blessings through His Son. Kindness is a part of the Christian’s life showing itself through deeds of kindness and extending mercy to others. The other fruits of the Spirit are more easily digested when covered with kindness. Forgiveness will be a better pill to swallow instead of a bitter pill to endure when kindness measures the heart. So often the reason it is hard to be kind is the word of God does not guide the heart. If the word of God is the sword of the Spirit then the more time spent in the word of God the kinder a person will become. How can he read of all the ways the Lord shows His kindness and not want to be a kind person to others? The truth will set us free from bitterness and make us to be kind people.
As D. A. Hayes said, “The philanthropy of God is to be reproduced in the philanthropy of men.” James reminds us that works show our faith and what better way to let our lights shine in the world than being people who speak with a kind tongue. Expressing thanks to others goes a long way in impressing upon a lost soul the joy of being a Christian. The fruit of the Spirit is opening a door for someone or helping someone with a heavy package. Being a kind person is the kind of person we should be in our conduct, presentation and attitude. Filling the heart with the fruit of the Spirit will change the gruff interior of the old man to a shining example of kindness so that others can see God living in our hearts. Here is the word from the Holy Spirit: be kind.