Sunday, October 12, 2014

Kindness and Patience

The sermon this weekend at our church is on Romans 2. I'd like to share what stood out to me.
"Do you show contempt for the riches of His kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?" Romans 2:4
How we feel about and how we treat God's kindness, forbearance, and patience affect how we treat other people. Do we truly realize that God's kindness is intended to lead us to repentance? If we do, we will also show kindness to other people because we want to lead them to repentance. Are you quick to judge others or are you quick to show kindness, patience, and understanding? There's a proper time to judge/discern but we must be careful not to have a judgmental attitude/a critical spirit, eager to point out all the sins, mistakes, & failures in other people's lives (while being oblivious to our own). Do you look down on others because they sin differently than you? We all are sinners and can only be saved by God's grace. Salvation is God's free gift available to all who put their faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Repentance is a requirement for salvation. God desires that all will come to repentance. We should, too! One of the most effective ways for us to reach out to unbelievers and open up an opportunity for sharing the Gospel with them is to show them kindness and patience. There's a saying: "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care." It's true!

Kindness Is C.O.O.L.

Caring about others' feelings and considering others' needs and wants above our own
Offering help, support, sympathy, understanding, prayers, encouragement, and friendship
Obeying the Lord's commands: "Love your neighbor as yourself" and "Do to others what you would have them do to you"
Loving others in words and actions. Love is patient, love is kind.

"Hatred and anger are powerless when met with kindness." Unknown
"Speak your kind words soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late." Unknown
"I shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now." Unknown
"One kind act will teach more love of God than a thousand sermons." Unknown

Kindness: Be Merciful

Why is it that we desire mercy for us but demand judgment on others? We, Christ's ambassadors, are to be gracious and merciful toward others. God has been faithfully gracious and merciful to us all. "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful!" (Luke 6:36) "Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy." (Matthew 5:7) Do your words and actions draw people to Jesus or away from Jesus? If you are unkind and impatient, do you think others would be interested in knowing your Savior or listening to what you have to share about God or the Bible?

Kindness: No Condemnation

"For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him." (John 3:17) "Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death." (Romans 8:1-2) If God does not condemn us or them, who are we to go around and condemn others? Let any one of us who is without sin be the first to throw a stone (see John 8:2-11)!

Immense Patience

"But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display His immense patience as an example for those who would believe in Him and receive eternal life." (1 Timothy 1:16) O the riches of God's inexhaustible grace, goodness, mercy, kindness, forbearance, and patience! How grateful I am that God is ever so patient with me even now when I still stumble and fall here and there :)! I want to be patient with others who are imperfect just like me. "The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. Instead He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9) That's God's heart! May our hearts be after God's own heart! May we share Christ's love with everyone, speak the truth in love with gentleness, respect, and humility, be kind and compassionate, be gracious and merciful, be patient and forbearing to all!

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