Zeal for Kindness

There’s a video by David Wolfe, titled “Think of This,” I saw floating around Facebook. The premise of the video is to encourage people to always be grateful and refrain from complaining. Here are a few statements from the video:

“Before you complain about the taste of your food, think of someone who has nothing to eat.”

“Before you complain about your husband or wife, think of someone who is crying out for a companion.”

“Before you complain about life, think about someone who passed away too early.”

“Before you complain about your children, think of someone who desires children but is barren.”

I can appreciate the overall message of the video. It is human nature to complain when things aren’t to our liking; I do so more than I’d like to admit…And it’s hard not to complain when experiencing trials. But the truth is we will not find peace in the midst of grumbling. Peace and joy come through thanksgiving. So take time to count your blessings. But don’t just count your blessings. As Christians, we are called to consider it great joy to meet trials because these types of circumstances produce endurance and a deeper, stronger faith in God. [James 1:2-3].

james
“Consider it great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.” James 1:2-3
My beef with this video, however, is in the first 10 seconds. In the background, you will notice two different shots of people signing. My first reaction was, “Hey! Deaf people! ASL!” But my excitement quickly evaporated when I read the caption in the foreground. It read:

david wolfe's video
A snapshot of David Wolfe’s video. It reads: “Before you think of saying an unkind word, think of someone who can’t speak.”
::Rolls eyes::

really

Ok, it’s true, some Deaf people do not use spoken language, but they certainly have a language, one that includes unsavory words. The two Deaf people featured in the background of the video were signing. They were “speaking” a language. Case in point, bad example.

But aside from this bad example, the fact that someone may not be able to speak should not be the incentive for refraining from saying unkind words. Personally, my zeal for speaking and acting kindly comes from my relationship with the Lord. I know that I am to love others as He has loved me [John 13:34] and I do so because He first loved me [1 John 4:19]. Moreover, I desire to be transformed by the Spirit to be more like my Savoir and my Savior personifies love [1 John 4:8].

God is love

The sad truth is that kindness appears to be invisible in our society. The political climate is no help either. People are quick to spew hate just because someone has a different opinion. Terrible. That’s why I love what Ben Carson posted on Facebook a few months ago:

In an effort to be more conscious of purposefully showing more love in my community, I have created a list of acts of kindness to perform throughout the year. I’ll share some below in case you’d like to join me. Most of them are small acts, but even small acts are a big deal.

*****

  1. Write a thank you card ‘just because’.
  2. Help a local business out by re-posting a promotion on social media.
  3. Surprise a friend with a small gift.
  4. Put an uplifting letter or Bible verse in a random mailbox.
  5. Spread awareness about a cause you support {or learn about a new one and spread awareness}.
  6. Leave a funny note or picture in your neighbor’s mailbox.
  7. Make a homemade gift for a family member or friend.
  8. Write a list of reasons why you love someone and give it to him/her.
  9. Buy {or make out of paper!} flowers for someone and put it at her door step.
  10. Make a donation – money, clothing, or food.
  11. Write positive body image notes and put them in jean pockets at a store
  12. Set an alarm to go off several times a day. Whenever it goes off, stop whatever you’re doing and pray for someone.
  13. Write a thank you note for your local fire department {or take snacks!}.
  14. Write ‘thank you’ on a big piece of paper and tape it on the side of your trash can so the trash collectors can see it.
  15. Buy {or make!} a bouquet of flowers and give them to someone at a nursing home.
  16. Write a short thank you note on your receipt at a restaurant.
  17. Bake cookies or other goodies and leave them on the doorstep of a friend or neighbor. {I would say keep it anonymous, but some people might be weary of eating cookies from an anonymous sender…}
  18. Write a letter to a family member or friend that you have not talked to in a while.
  19. Leave a nice cold Gatorade for the mail carrier.
  20. Write a letter or message to a former teacher that impacted you.

Will you join me in spreading kindness around?

throw kindness
Throw kindness around like confetti!
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24 thoughts on “Zeal for Kindness

  1. I’m very inspired by your words! James 1:2-3 and 1 Peter 1:6-9New International Version (NIV) 6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls. New International Version (NIV) are one in the same message. Since my first brain surgery, I have had peace and strength through these words directly from God. Each and every time we are all together, you exude the same peace and strength! It is a joy to have a sister in Christ who considers her trials a great joy! I am inspired to make a list of acts of kindness that I will do in order to love more deeply. To be honest, I’m not very good at doing this for those who live under the same roof as me. As I am reaching out to families in my community, I MUST NOT forget to take the time to show love and appreciation to my family. I hope that we can share ideas on how to love others deeply through this site or through texting or both. I am indeed going to journal everything commuted to this cause and I thank you deeply sister and friend for the inspiring words!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so right. It IS easy to forget to show kindness to those that are under the same roof. I’ve included a few specific things to do for family members, like a thank you card ‘just because’ or a list of reasons why I love them. Let’s exchange more ideas!

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      1. Those are wonderful ideas! Pastor Tony Nolan, in Atlanta, once wrote that in his house, no Good deed goes without acknowledgement. I’ve been trying to thank the kids for every dish they rinse and place in the sink. During the school year, I sometimes place a note in their lunch boxes or planners. When we go to a movie or on a trip, I thank Jonathan for his hard work that provides those blessings from God. In the neighborhood, I provide snacks and cold drinks for our trash workers each week. Sometimes I include a thank you note for their hard work in keeping our community clean. If you have other ideas for spouses, could you share them? I struggle with that. 💙🙏🏻

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t even deal with the video treating deaf people that way! It infuriates me 😡 But I absolutely loved everything you wrote. You hit the nail on the head about kindness being almost obsolete these days. I have just started a new outreach program in my church, so I love the list!! Great ideas.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The video you mention sounds bizarre, uneducated, not helpful & patronising tbh. I love that you can immediately counter that by expressing the love of God. So easy to get sucked in to anger by something that grates. And as you say, there’s much that can egg that emotion on currently. Certainly here in the UK. Your plan for sharing acts of kindness with those around you is wonderful. I love the idea of putting a kind note through a neighbour’s door…have I the courage to do that? I was reminded of kindness after my husband spent over an hour recently in a thicket hedge helping my neighbour catch their chicken…with cheers he came out smiling as they succeeded. Thanks so much for the reminder we all need to keep hearing & acting on.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Your husband sounds like a kind man! Over an hour helping a neighbor catch their chicken? I’m not sure I would have lasted that long! 😂 You could always write anonymous notes for your neighbors. They don’t HAVE to know it’s from you!

      You’re right, though, it is easy to succumb to anger. I probably wouldn’t have been so “slow to anger” if there was an actual person in front of me saying that sort of thing…😬 Thank you for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hey Virginia! Love your kindness list! We should all have one and encourage our children to create their own too!

    Thanks again for supporting my brand new blog! I look forward to swinging back to yours for more great posts!

    Liked by 1 person

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