This post was inspired by a devotional from Pastors Chris and Cindy Beall from the Oklahoma City Life.Church location. Find the devotional on the Life.Church OKC Instagram page.
What’s occurring in our lives can affect how we respond to the situations we face. Outside pressures or uncertain circumstances can bring out the best or worst in us. And sometimes, letting out the ugly can seem a bit easier than displaying the good stuff. But regardless of how we feel, we can choose kindness and patience and use it to help others and make our world a better place.
Whether we’re in a difficult time as a nation or individually, we can’t let fear or worry overtake us. These negative emotions can dictate our lives to the point where we feel as if we’ve lost control. Our feelings are a way of letting us know where we stand, but they should not govern how we act.
What if we didn’t allow our negative feelings to control us? What if we followed Christ’s example and loved other people as He loves them? We have the power of the Holy Spirit to give us strength in our weaknesses. When Christ works through those weaknesses, we’re actually strong! (See 2 Corinthians 12:9-10.) We can choose kindness and patience even when it’s challenging to do so.
Here are some helpful tips:
1. Pre-decide to choose kindness and patience. We possess a sinful nature (Romans 5:12) so it’s easy for us to operate with a lack of kindness and patience. It takes little effort on our part to “act natural,” so we have to adjust our mindset. We must seek God’s help and decide ahead of time to act like Christ, in ways that help and bless others. And the more we do it, the more these kind acts will become our natural heart stance.
2. Picture yourself being kind and patient. That’s right. Imagine yourself in settings where you act with kindness and patience. Maybe you’re waiting in a long line at the store or answering a toddler’s question for the thirtieth time that day. Whatever your situation, picture yourself showing kindness in your words, tone, and actions.
3. Act kindly and patiently. When you walk into a store, say hello to the people who work there first. When you see someone walking outside, say “Hi!” and genuinely ask how they’re doing. Choose five people a day to reach out to via text message. Let them know they’re on your heart and mind, and that you’re praying for them. It doesn’t take much to distribute kindness and patience to a world in need of it.
We can impact so many people with our words, actions, and spirit when we choose kindness and patience. Let’s be aware of all the ways God is allowing us to make a difference in the lives of people. When we follow Christ’s example and impact others positively, the world becomes a better place.