The more I think about the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit the more I realise how supernatural each and every single one of these fruits is. Only through the power of the Spirit of God can we ‘truly know’ and experience what love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control are. (Galatians 5:22-23, NKJV).
The more we trust and obey the Holy Spirit’s voice the more of His fruits transform our souls. And as your thought-life is transformed (Pr. 23:7; Rom. 12:2) so will your character be. This is the foundation of becoming like Christ.
To date we have looked at the spiritual fruits (flavors) of love, joy, peace and patience. Today we turn to the spiritual fruit of ‘kindness.’
I have yet to meet anyone who does not want kindness. I’m sure we can all agree that more kindness would make the world a better place. But what exactly is kindness? Where does it come from? What does kindness do?
We often hear kindness associated with being friendly, generous, and considerate. While this may be helpful, these three terms do not capture the full nature of what kindness looks like. I want suggest three things the Bible reveals about kindness rooted in Christ, which gives the term some needed substance:
Examples of kindness
In Luke 6:27-31 Jesus says to:
Then He concludes with, “Do to others as you would like them to do to you.”(Luke 6:31, NLT) This is God’s kind of kindness. Jesus is asking us to do the impossible, humanly speaking.
But Jesus went further. In His sermon on the mount He says,
“Treat others as you want them to treat you. This is what the Law and the Prophets[a] are all about.” (Matt. 7:12, CEV) Wow! What an amazing statement! The entire Old Testament (i.e. the Law and the Prophets) was based on one simple principle – That whatever you want people to do to you, you do to them.
What we’ve just seen is a universal principle that cannot be changed. And what God establishes, remains.
“But what if I’ve been kind, nice, and do all of that I’m supposed to do to him/her and well, it seems like, things are getting worse…….there is no change…..I’m still suffering.” This is a common objection.
Paul answers with two scriptures,
“Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for you reap whatever you sow.” (Gal. 6:7, NRSV) God has set this universal law from day one of creation and will never be wrong – whatever you sow, you will reap. In short, God sees all and knows. The kindness you have been sowing? Well, make no mistake, God sees to it that you will reap a harvest of blessings.
But how long Lord? How long will I have to put up with this?
“…..let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” (Gal. 6:9, NLT)
Let those words sink in.
God is reminding you of last week’s topic – patience! And remember it’s His patience, not yours. Lean on Him.
While waiting for the promised results, the above verse says ‘at just the right time you will reap your harvest.’ That perfect timing is in God’s hand. Listen, ‘don’t get tired of doing good, for just at the right time, your harvest of blessing will arrive!’ Trust, rely, depend on His faithful promises.
In combining A & B – treat others the way you want others to treat you & you always reap what you sow – it becomes “enlightened self-interest”. That is, what you want to get back is what you give out! If you want kindness, you better be kind. It is in your best interest, in my best interest, to be kind to others because God who cannot be mocked, sees to it that we get our reward – kindness, from others!