Jesus Is Kindness
Commerce functions on some basic principles: You get what you pay for. You get paid what you earned. What goes around comes around.
It’s not too hard to see how these principles dominate how we treat one another. Give people what they deserve. If they disappoint you, leave them. If they fail you, cut your losses and let them sink or swim on their own. If they hurt you, get your revenge. If they’re “foreign,” fear and suspect them until they prove themselves.
One gospel principle, which is a fruit of the Spirit, goes against our natural instincts but is a powerful force for building God’s kingdom. It is the call to treat people better than they deserve. Jesus both taught that concept and lived it: “When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, ‘Will you give me a drink?’ The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?’ (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans)” (John 4:7,9).
Though her ethnic group rejected most of the Bible, though her personal moral life was in severe disarray, Jesus engaged her on her terms, spoke kindly with her, and helped her find salvation that day at the well. His mission was not to criticize her but to win her heart. Mission accomplished.