These are my 'kind', or in it's origin, my kin, which according to the dictionary means nature or natural order, innate character, form or condition, hence 'a class or race distinguished by innate characteristics.' My kin who, by nature, share my characteristics. That statement makes me both happy and sad... oh to live a life where all your characteristics are worthy of passing on to your children... but that's another story.
When I looked up the definition of kind my search was after the adjective, kind, not the noun because my plan was to write a story on being kind. The verse in Ephesians 4:32 has been rolling around in my head since I woke up this morning. "Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you."
The first definition to pop up on my computer was the noun, kind. I had never once in my life given thought to the difference, they were two separate words to me with two different meanings, and they are... but are they really? To be kind means to show a friendly, generous and considerate nature. There's that word again, nature...
It is God's nature to be kind. He can not be anything but kind for that is who he is. Just like he can't be anything but Holy or righteous. It is his kindness that leads us to repentance. Or 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
Think about the last time you were in an argument with someone. Even if you were wrong, did you ever feel like asking for forgiveness from the person screaming in your face? Probably not. How would you have felt if they had been kind and compassionate in the face of your mistake? Would your heart have been softer?
We are created in the image and likeness of God, therefore it should be our nature to be kind. So how come it isn't always that easy? The long and short of it is Satan and the fall of man way back in the Garden of Eden. That too is another story...
So why did my kiddos end up in my story about being kind? Because they made me think about all things kind and unkind. If your family is like mine, we aren't always kind to each other. Sometimes kin can be the most unkind. Often it is easier to be kind to a stranger than your own kin. We know too much about each other's character flaws but we should remember they know just as much about ours and that should lead us to kindness and grace. Their character flaws are my character flaws. And sometimes kin can be the kindest because they see your character flaws in the light of their own and are full of grace and understanding. My kids are not perfect but they love each other and they have each others back when push comes to shove even if they aren't always kind to each other, which for the most part they are.
I think as parents we always want our kids to get along all the time and always be kind. I remember feeling like a referee most days while they were growing up. "Be nice", "Don't treat your sister that way", "Share", "That wasn't very kind" were words often coming from my mouth. It was my feeble attempt at being their 'kinsmen redeemer' for each other.
I love the story of Ruth and Boaz found in the book of Ruth in the Bible. What a love story. It is near and dear to my heart as I look back over my own life in both its' physical and spiritual condition. God knows my nature and he knows I need hands on, eyes on, that I need a real life example. In his grace he honored that need when I met my husband. He let me experience in real life the actions of a kinsmen redeemer in David, so that I would one day be able to understand about Christ as the true Kinsmen Redeemer. When I met David, I was as needy as Ruth when she came to Boaz. Being unable to rescue herself, Ruth requested that Boaz, her kinsmen redeemer, cover her with his protection, redeem her and make her his wife. A very poignant picture when you realize your own helpless condition. A very real picture of what Christ, the true Kinsmen (Kind) Redeemer has done for us by his death on the cross. He bought us for himself, redeeming us from our unkindness and making us his kin.
Kind is kin in it's original form. Kin have similar characteristics. We are all kin because we are all human. We all have feeling that can be hurt, we all need help, we all need grace... we all need kindness. When we remember what we share, kindness flows from us naturally.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17
If you are in Christ, being kind is in your nature, practice kindness until it is as natural as breathing.
This story was written as part of a 31 day writing challenge. To read more of my stores in teh challenge click on my link. Thanks!