Pleasant and Gracious Servanthood
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted. Ephesians 4:32
True kindness springs from a tender heart, a heart that has been softened by God's quiet love. Kindness is betrayed by roughness and stoic indifference. It is not genuine when strings are attached, and never does it call attention to itself.
In marriage, kindness means doing the right things—like bringing flowers and remembering anniversaries—and doing these things with the tenderness of a caring heart. Kindness means having a pleasant attitude when helping your spouse with a project. It means talking to one another with words that are gentle rather than sharp, tender rather than harsh. Kindness means showing mercy and sympathy. It means looking for opportunities to serve our spouse and show him or her tender care.
God showed us the ultimate act of kindness when He stooped down from heaven to serve us in the person of His Son. He has vulnerably revealed the loveliness of His heart by giving Christ in our stead. He used His strength and might for our protection and redemption, but He demonstrated His kindness daily.
We men have believed a lie. Society has convinced us that to be tender is to be weak, that to show kindness is to be less than a man. But the Savior of the universe, who battled through the gates of hell, modeled real manhood for us, and He did it through kindness.
The Savior showed kindness as He knelt before His twelve disciples and gently washed their feet. On the eve of His death, Jesus wanted His last moments with them to include this kind gesture.
May we married people find ways to demonstrate that sort of kindness to our spouses.
In what ways can you demonstrate true kindness to your spouse today?
Father, soften my heart that my spouse might see the depth of my feeling through acts of kindness.
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