Cultivating a Heart of Kindness: Patient & Gentleness Series #11

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

I was staying up one night reading Kara Tippets’ book: Big Love: the practice of loving beyond your limits. It's one of those books that I will read again and again. You can get your own copy HERE.
Below is my take away from the book:

Kindness is part of our new identity as Christians, part of fruit of the Spirit.
 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Kindness involves sacrifice, putting someone else above yourself. 
Kindness means noticing someone else and recognizing his/her needs
It means seeing the value in every person we meet.”
Let’s evaluate how we live our life; Is it characterized by kindness? 
In what areas of your life do you struggle with kindness: In the rush morning, when you are tired?

The challenge to live in kindness was not a simple one
 If love is kind, can we disagree with kindness?
Can we not get our way, not be right; can we be tired or sick— all with kindness?
Could we let go of  the need to be right, the need to win a fight, the subtle cold edges I carried?
If God expects kindness from us, then He will supply the grace to live in that kindness.

What if we try so hard but still have moments when we blew it?
We then had the joy of repentance. The gift of humbly admitting where we had failed, and asking God to help change our heart, and ask the person we had offended to forgive us.

If our goal in life is to never be wrong, to win, to always be on top, we will find ourselves lonely
Putting aside the need to be right, approved, and together, and living in community needy and broken has given us great freedom to live in the freedom of knowing and enjoying Jesus!

Everyone is looking for grace, love, and care; when anger breaks these connections.
“The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride. Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:8-9

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the LORD has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” Colossians 3:12-14
How can you put on this kind of love today?
How can you press into Jesus and ask him to help you grow deeper in an area you are struggling? Jesus, would you grow my heart in every direction that is bound together in love.

Having a teachable heart is the very essence of loving with kindness.

The heart of being able to love big is being loved. Jesus loves you that big.
Each day is a gift. Live each moment knowing, even your unseen movement towards love and away from unkindness, matters.  Love BIG. You will never regret time spent loving beyond your own ability to love.