Excerpt from “Accelerator”, Accelerated Christian Education, Jan-Feb 2016, pg 3.
The A.C.E. definition of kind is “showing a genuine, harmonious attitude toward others.” Pudge, who is new to the school, notices Racer holding the door open for the girls and allowing them to go first. Three different opportunities occur to Pudge when he thinks of showing kindness. First, allow the girls to be first to use the water fountain. Second, hold the door open for them whenever possible. Third, allow the girls to board the bus first. Pudge confirms with Racer that the girls go first most of the time because it is polite. Pudge learned through the positive example of Racer that he should treat the girls with kindness.
The Bible instructs us in Ephesians 4:32, “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” As Christians, we should be kind to all people, not only for their sakes but because Christ has forgiven us. Christ’s kindness should be reflected in our daily interaction with all those we encounter. Just as Pudge learned how to be kind from the positive example of Racer, our students should learn kindness from our positive example in the Learning Center.
In Luke 10:30–37 Jesus illustrates how the Good Samaritan showed kindness when he put aside his own interests and plans in order to give aid to the wounded man. The Good Samaritan did not even know the injured man; he simply saw the need and acted upon it. Genuine kindness is spontaneous; it overflows from the love of God within us. But we must be clean vessels into which God can pour His love and character. God’s kindness mixed with our selfishness can only spill over hypocrisy. Therefore, we ask for His forgiveness and cleansing before we offer ourselves to Him to fill us with the fruit of the Spirit. After we are forgiven, we then keep ourselves clean through reading His Word and prayer. As our hearts are controlled by God’s Spirit, He will work through us to show kindness to others. When our cup overflows with God’s love, it spills kindness onto those around us. When God’s love fills us, being kind to others is the natural result.
Our heart attitudes are most often revealed by our words and body language. How do we respond to the child who has put his flag up for the fifth time to ask the same question? Are we encouraging to the child who is struggling to master a new concept? Do we say the right words but show impatience in our demeanor? God wants to love that child through you. Show true kindness with God’s Spirit working through you; your children will know the difference. The best way to instill kindness is to practice kindness. Lead your students through your example today. You may soon discover that there is a genuine, harmonious attitude all around you. Kindness is contagious!