Becoming a Fruit Tree – Part 5 – Kindness
Romans 2:4b “…The Kindness of God leads you to repent.”
Kindness has a sort of mystical power. It is not something that you can understand naturally. Kindness has the ability to change situations. In Romans 2, Paul is talking about The Justice of God. The fact that he gives each according to what they deserve, and he reminds us that we once were deserving of much judgment and wrath.
However, God in his love for us, extended kindness. This as Eugene H. Peterson puts it in his Biblical Paraphrase, “Takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change.”
Many people view fear as a great motivator, which it is. Fear will cause you to do many things that you would not normally do. However, fear is not the proper motivator, because once the fear is lifted, the actions will change to the pre-fear state, even if it takes a long time.
In the movie Inception, Leonardo DiCaprio puts it perfectly, “No, cause I think positive emotion trumps negative emotion every time. We all crave reconciliation – we’re catharsis. We need Robert Fischer to have a positive emotional reaction to all this.” God is not a warmonger trying to make slaves, but he is a lover trying to make lovers.
Now, by the nature of this group, I know we are already repentant lovers of Christ; you wouldn’t want to spend much time with me if you weren’t. So what does this scripture hold as value for us?
Pause and look for imput from people?
What if we start looking at kindness as a weapon? Perhaps we can view kindness as something that can change our situations.
What if we decide to allow the kindness of Jesus to flow in and out of us?
What if we got it into our heads that there is a level of Justice that we can help to bring forth on the earth?
I personally feel we have a mixed up view of Kindness. We look at it as speaking nice to people and being ‘friendly’ What if there was a different form of Kindness that was able to affect social and individual change?
Kindness goes hand in hand with Justice. What if you became an engine for social justice? When was the last time you help someone in need. Gave money to the poor, fed the needy, and clothed the destitute? Justice is Gods hand of Kindness being poured out upon the earth.
There is a movement within the church to be more missional which is to be Justice Minded. It started with fringe people like Shane Claibourne and Tony Campolo. At first their message got lost in their methods as they were so justice oriented that they shunned almost every other Christian discipline. But as other ministries have realized the need for works of justice, it has given the Church to opportunity to rise up and be what God intended for us.
Last year when the Nation of Haiti was devastated by an earthquake, it was the Christians who rose up and brought the most help. Now, this has become an agent for Religious change in the nation of Haiti. There is more opportunity for evangelism than ever before, what was once a voodoo nation is now a hotbed for Miracles and the kingdom.