“Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck. Write them on the tablet of your heart.” – Proverbs 3:3
“Be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ has also forgiven you.” – Ephesians 4:32
In the week 2 challenge we were reminded that Jesus came to restore our relationships – with God, with creation and with each other. As people, we are part of God’s creation, and all of us find it far too easy to take the rest of His creation for granted – whether we think of pollution, waste, over-consumption, species extinction, and also . . . how we treat each other.
When I was recently in Nepal, I was fortunate to hike in the beautiful Himalayas to some of the highest living, but poorest, communities on earth. They live just 10km from the epicentre of the 2015 earthquake. Every single home had been completely destroyed.
As I walked up to 8 hours each day between different devastated communities, in every village I was blessed with many random acts of kindness. People who had lost everything, barely recovering, 10 months after the quake, insisted on helping set up my tent; laid straw under it as insulation; cooked simple food for me and even accompanied me 8 hours to the next village to make sure I was safe on the steep paths. Having walked for days to reach them, with just a small rucksack of few possessions, I couldn’t really do anything to repay them.
Tearfund’s “Ordinary Heroes” bible study on restored relationships, here, helps us explore the connection between being humankind, and caring for creation.
And here are a few ideas of random acts of kindness we could use, whether by ourselves, or as a whole family:
- Introduce yourself to your neighbours – compliment them on something
- Befriend someone who is lonely
- Pay for the coffee / lunch / parking meter of the person behind you
- Tell your colleagues something you appreciate about them or their work
- Write a letter to a friend or relative – when did you last do that?
- Share your friendships – connect some of your friends
- Listen, instead of talking, and tell the person what you think you’ve heard them say
- Take time to reflect on how you beat yourself up, pray, and forgive yourself
- Do something nice for someone in secret
- Give someone else your seat on the train or bus
- Invite someone new to lunch
- Walk around the office and encourage or thank people you don’t usually talk with
For more ideas, search the internet for Random Acts of Kindness, or visit the Random Acts of Kindness (UK) Facebook page, here.
Have fun. Kindness can be contagious.
– Mike Wiggins, Soul Living Team