“God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance.” Romans 2:4
“Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” -Mother Teresa
- Be still and know that He is God. Psalm 46:10 reminds us to stop and be still. Sit down in your prayer closet with your Bible, journal, a pen, and your favorite tea or coffee. Listen for God to speak to you during this time.
- Read Colossians 3:12-14. Ask the Holy Spirit to illuminate His Word deep in your heart. In your journal, list the character traits that we should have as God’s chosen, holy, beloved ones.
God’s Kindness Transforms a Heart
What is so exciting about kindness? It can sound cliché and mundane. Random acts of kindness and niceness. Nice guys always finish last. Is it even important to be kind in this world anymore?
What is kindness anyway? Oxford Dictionary defines kindness as affection, friendliness, concern, consideration, and generosity. In the Bible, Romans 2:4 tells us that it is God’s kindness which leads us to repentance. God shows us His “affection, friendliness, concern, consideration, and generosity” because he wants our hearts to turn toward Him.
In trying to motivate yourself toward loving God more, do you sit down and solemnly recall all of God’s laws and commandments? No! Is it His rules that move your heart? No!
More often, we remember the kind and loving things God has done for us, and it softens our heart to Him. It really is His kindness that leads us to repentance.
Here’s the truth: kindness is exciting! It’s the way God transforms our hearts. What’s even more exciting: we have this example from our Heavenly Father to emulate as we parent our earthly children!
It doesn’t mean being overly lenient to be perceived as kind. It is important to note that God requires children to obey parents, according to Ephesians 6:1; children need limits, guidelines, and loving discipleship from parents.
Also important to note, is that God’s kingdom is about love and relationship. In John 3:16, God gave up His only Son because He loved us. According to Jesus in Luke 10:27, loving God and loving others well is God’s greatest commandment.
A loving relationship, not rules, is God’s priority.
Yet, early on as a mom, I valued compliance in my children. If I’m honest, I was simply exhausted and desperate for peace in my home. I was focused on rules, and I was only sort of kind.
One of my boys would misbehave, so I would discipline him. As he got older, he was able to articulate the reason for his disobedience: he wanted me to show him kindness. He would say, “I need more love.” This breaks my heart now because my response then was anger and punishment. All he needed was kindness from his mom. My kindness had the power to transform and soften his little heart.
Following in the footsteps of our own Romans 2:4 relationship with our Heavenly Father, when our children misbehave, our parental love and kindness can cultivate a genuine softness of heart and repentance in them. As children grow older and leave our care, this model of kindness will train them for a loving relationship with their Heavenly Father.
A daily prayer for myself and other moms is that I follow God by showing kindness to my children in my affection, friendliness, concern, consideration, and generosity toward them. He models that so perfectly toward me.
Oh, Heavenly Father, may we follow Your example! Holy Spirit, fill us with Your fruit of kindness.
Questions to Ponder
- Examine your motherhood carefully- how often would your children say you show kindness to them?
- Kindness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit being present in your life. What are some ways you can let Him bring more kindness into your life?
- What one thing can you add to your day to show kindness and draw your child’s heart to you in love & repentance? Here are some ideas:
-Is it looking into their eyes when they talk?
-Is it stopping when they enter the room?
-Is it smiling at them?
-Or is it serving them & lovingly explaining that you serve them because you love them?
- Whatever it may be, decide on that one new thing and commit to daily showing your children your kindness toward them.
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"...he set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God…”(v. 2-3)
Kristi loves to sing "a song of praise to our God, as He makes her steps secure” atop the Rocky Mountains! So far, she has summited 13 of Colorado's 14,000ft peaks with her husband and 2 boys.After 35 years in California, Kristi and her family have made their home in Colorado, where they delight in spending time together hiking, biking, playing music, or canoeing.