We are studying different characteristics of love from I Corinthians 13. We last broke down the idea that love is patient. Today we are going to look at the truth that love is kind.
I looked up the definition of kindness. Google says Kindness is an adjective that means "having or showing a friendly, generous, and considerate nature."
Most of us can think of people in our lives we consider kind. These are the people that always take the time to make us feel warmly welcomed when we see them. These are the friends who have us over to their home and give generously of their time, home, money and talents to help others.
My favorite explanation is that they are considerate. These are the people who just naturally say, "Excuse me" and open doors and let you go first in line. In other words, these are the people who put others first, and that certainly is applauded in scripture.
Philippians 2:3-4 says, "Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others."
That explains why considerate and kind people love so well. They are not prideful. They think about others' needs more than their own. They consider others as MORE significant than themselves.
That sounds like a love that is like Christ's love for us. Philippians 2:5-8 goes on to say that Christ exemplifies humble kindness. "Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."
How can you exemplify kindness like Christ today?
--How about letting your spouse pick his movie or restaurant for your next outing?
--How about letting that person with a few items move ahead of you in line?
--Maybe you can go strike up a conversation with that girl/co-worker/mom who seems to be isolated or alone at school/work/etc.
--Park far away from the church so someone else can have the better parking spots.
--Volunteer to serve at church so you can minister to the needs of others in your body of believers.
--Write a note of encouragement to someone who ministers to you.
Love is kind.