Can You Suffer and Still be Kind?
How do you respond when some one rubs you the wrong way, mistreats you, causes you pain or make you suffer? Do you respond with the same treatment, cut them off all together or do you respond with kindness? Responding with kindness is probably the less likely response. Human nature says when you hurt me, I will hurt you. If you cause me pain, I will cause you pain. If you make me suffer, I will make you suffer. God’s nature is different. Therefore, our challenge this week is to be kind in the midst of whatever you are going through.
To suffer is to endure pain, disability or a disadvantage willfully and patiently. It could also mean to undergo or experience a condition, process that causes pain. Suffering may require you to tolerate or allow something that may not feel so good. On the other hand, to be kind is to be considerate, helpful, mild, gentle, having a good nature and loving. I Corinthians 13:4 says “Love suffers long and is kind.” Suffering and kindness don’t seem to go together. Therefore, it’s a challenge to be kind to someone while you are suffering. However, God knows that we can’t demonstrate this kind of love without Him.
Some relationships are challenging. People have different personalities, beliefs, habits and behaviors that make them difficult to work with, live with and to love. But God is calling us to love the unlovely and to be kind. Luke 6:32 says “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you?” It’s easy to love those who love you and treat you the way that you want to be treated but can you love the unlovely? (This is the test of being a true Christian).
Maybe you are going through a painful situation or you know someone who is going through. Be encouraged to keep showing love. Go to Love (God) to get the love that you need. When you can’t take it any more, God will shower you with His love and give you strength from above. Being mean and nasty displeases God. His desire is that we conduct ourselves with love and kindness. It may be your spouse, your child, your co-worker or a friend who has hurt you. No matter what you are going through, remember to return to God day after day for a fresh supply of love and kindness. Everything that you are experiencing will help to develop you into the person who God wants you to be. Think about someone who has displayed this type of love to you and thank them.
Until until next week. . .