In addition to exhibiting empathy and showing kindness to yourself and others, in order to fully embrace kindness, you must let go of hatred, bitterness, and resentment. If you allow a relationship to deteriorate because of resentment, you will find it difficult to express a kind word or make a kind gesture to that person. But by practicing kindness and praying for that person, even if you don’t feel like it, you will help heal that relationship. As you let go of bitterness and ill-will toward a person, you will grow in lovingkindness, finding freedom in forgiveness and humility.
Showing kindness to others won’t always be easy. You may face rejection. Or you may need to spend significant amounts of your time or resources. But showing kindness is not only a fruit of the Spirit, it will restore your soul. It banishes hatred and gives room for love to take root. Set aside your own agenda and your fear of rejection and exercise the kindness of the Holy Spirit.
Today as you spend time with God in prayer, ask Him to show you the areas in your life that are holding you back from experiencing kindness. Do you find yourself judging instead of empathizing with others when they are in need or have failed? Is there a past sin in your own life for which you haven’t allowed God to forgive you? Whatever the reason, ask for God’s strength to enable you to overcome these obstacles. And begin to pray regularly for the Holy Spirit to prompt you daily to show kindness to others.
Prayer: Father, help me to overcome the obstacles that are keeping me from exercising kindness. I pray that Your Spirit would prompt me to show kindness to those around me today. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
“Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else” (1 Thessalonians 5:15).
Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef’s sermon The Spirituality That Heals, Part 5: LISTEN NOW
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