Babies are so cute! Can’t you just picture one gurgling, cooing and smiling at you? They usually babble before they learn real words. Often their first word is either mama or dada. Of course, it is not long before they learn the words mine and no! Eventually they are putting together sentences. It seems like one sentence every child learns early is this: “That’s not fair!”
We all have a sense of fairness. We want to be treated fairly by others. If someone wrongs us, we want them to pay. We often try to get even ourselves. That’s what makes 1 Thessalonians 5:15 such a challenge. It says, “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.”(NIV)
Kindness is the opposite of revenge. It goes above and beyond fair. We are supposed to be kind to everyone, not just fellow followers of Jesus.
Wait, I know – some of you may think there is a loop hole here. The passage says “try to be kind.” But the word try can be translated “seek.” It is not describing a half-hearted attempt, but a strong pursuit. Kindness isn’t easy, especially when you have been wronged. That’s why we need to always seek to be kind. That’s also why we need God’s Spirit changing our hearts to produce kindness in us!
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.