The Law of Kindness

Kindness changes and touches lives. As we open this powerful gift and let it come into our thinking, it transforms our words, views, actions, and reactions. It has the power to spread through every part of our lives, and bring us into realms that we could never imagine.
Mother Teresa is a perfect example of kindness touching the whole world through a person. She was known in the Catholic Church as Saint Teresa of Calcutta. When she left earth, the Missionaries of Charity were left with 610 missions and homes for people with HIV/AIDS, leprosy and tuberculosis in 123 countries. Several of her quotes reveal the kindness that was in her heart.
“Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” “Spread love everywhere you go: first of all in your own home. Give love to your children, to your wife or husband; to a next-door neighbor . . . Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness; kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile, kindness in your warm greeting.”
Kindness means tender hearted and compassionate with others. It is mild, gentle and inspires sweetness and affection. It wishes well and is not harsh. It extends good to others and reaches into situations to bring about good. It never adds pain to a person. Webster’s states the meaning of kindness “is treating people with kindness and respect. Respect - an act of giving particular attention : consideration, high or special regard : esteem”.
When I was 12, my father was killed while flight testing an airplane in his work, at the military base near us. It was a difficult next few days for our family. There were many who came to help comfort my mother, but my brother and I were hurting without a personal touch from others. The day before my father’s funeral a neighbor came and asked if she could take me shopping to find an outfit for the funeral. Our neighborhood was filled with fine upright people, and many Christians. But this neighbor, though well off financially, was known to be a notorious woman. But at that time she befriended me with kindness that stuck with me for years. Not only did she outfit me, but her words were kind and encouraging. For years I remembered that act of kindness with deep gratitude. We kept in touch through the years after I married, and later when she was struggling in her older years, I was able to lead her to Jesus.
There are many forms in which we may express kindness or the lack of towards others. Often our mouths are the chosen tool. Recently one of our children was going through a phase and was verbally attacking our other young children many times each day. We had countless time outs at the kitchen table. I was really tired of the continual fighting. My patience had worn thin and I was sending this child to the table with a gruff look and the word “Now!”
Then I had this wonderful dream, one that I am very thankful for. In the dream the Lord told me to stick out my tongue and He laid a long piece of candy across my tongue. On the candy was written - the law of kindness. And during the dream I had the thought, as we speak kindness it is sweet to us, and to others. I know that this was God’s reminder to me, and the key in helping our daughter overcome destructive behavior with her mouth.
Discipline alone is never enough. When we mix kindness with discipline to effectively get to the end where we desire for behavior change is a prayer journey. We aren’t completely there yet in our situation, but I can tell you that dream reminder has made a significant difference in our journey with our daughter. Every morning in our devotions as we recite I Corinthians 13, which includes, “Love is patient and kind” I am reminded of my sweet dream.
Most have read in the news the result of a lack of kindness when a young woman encouraged her boy friend to commit suicide. The shocking part was her total lack of compassion for her boy friend. Her harsh words brought death instead of life. This is a prime example of the Scripture that tells us that the power of death and life are in the power of the tongue. Pr 18:21.
The Bible praises the Proverbs lady in Proverbs 31:26, “She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.” Chapter 31 describes the characteristics of a virtuous woman. Our speech and the way we express ourselves verbally affects all areas of our life. Her conversation was wise and gentle; her words were guided by wisdom and grace to encourage others. This practice is called the Law of Kindness, and it was found on her tongue.
The Bible says the tongue of the wise brings healing. Pr 12:18. The wise tongue is seasoned with salt - salt is a healing agent. Col 4:6. James 3 tells us that out of the same mouth can come blessing and cursing, but this shouldn’t be so. The Bible also tells us to refuse evil and choose good! Isa 7:15. Our mouths should speak good conversation with wisdom. The damage that is done when we speak unkind words to anyone, including our children, can be devastating. Ja 3:10-13.
Kindness involves words and actions. There was a kind man that Jesus spoke about in the Bible as an example to all Christians. It is the Good Samaritan story. There was a Jew traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho who was beaten, robbed, and left for dead on the road. A priest came along, but would not help him. Then a Levite came by and saw him, but also passed by without helping him. But the Samaritan saw him and helped the man. The Samaritan was a person whom a Jew had no right to expect any help from. Samaritans were foes of the Jews, and they had no dealings with each other. This Samaritan not only took care of the Jew’s wounds, but also then took him to an inn and paid the innkeeper to take care of the man until he was well. Though the others were religious they were not kind. Lu 10:30-35.
Let us submit our lives and our tongues to the Holy Spirit; let our minds and hearts be filled with the Word of God; so that we can be a blessing to the Lord and to those around us. “Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;” Col 3:12. Let us build up with our actions and mouths and not tear down. Let us leave people in a better way than we found them. “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.” Ps 19:14 14. May kindness be found in words and actions!