May the Lord be loyal to you in return and reward you with his unfailing love! – 2 Samuel 2:6a
Saul and Jonathan died in battle on Mount Gilboa while fighting the Philistines. The king was mortally wounded and asked a passerby to thrust him through to prevent the enemy from torturing him until he died. The man complied with his request but later paid for it with his life because David executed this man for killing the Lord’s anointed one. When the men of Jabesh-Gilead heard that Saul’s body had been taken to Philistine territory to be paraded as a war trophy, they went there to get his body and bring him back to be buried properly in Israel. David heard news of this event and prayed that they’d be blessed of the Lord for their kindness shown to the their leader despite the fact that God had left him.
Jesus would later teach that if you want some one to love you, love them first. If you want some one to be kind to you, be kind first. We know better as the golden rule and taken from the KJV as, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Much as obedience brings blessing, so to does kindness bring reward. Of all the people who had a “right” to be mad at Saul, take his life in revenge, and even possibly rejoice as the news of his death it would David. David had been hunted by Saul for years even though David had won great battles for Saul, played his harp to calm Saul’s troubled spirit, and been his greatest commander. However, David didn’t want Saul killed; he praised the life and times of the Lord’s anointed in spite of his wrongs. The people of Benjamin were right also in retrieving Saul’s body and giving him a proper burial . Their kindness brought a reward of blessing from the new king, David, and his prayerful request that God bless them also.
Who can you show kindness to today, tomorrow, or next week? Who has done something in your life that has caused you to be a better person? What person in your life has caused you grief and made life unbearable? Regardless of what people have done to us, we owe it to the LORD to show kindness to all people. Why? The fruit of the Spirit lists among those mentioned, kindness. Kindness has become a lost art in the modern world. People are so busy going about their lives and worrying about their concerns that most people don’t even stop to consider the needs of others.
I am reminded of the phrase, “Find a need and fill it; find a hurt and heal it.” Let’s be aware of the people around us and allow the Holy Spirit to guide to those in need or who are hurting. We are his extended hands, feet, and heart in this world. It is us who God chooses to love on others in their time of need. It is high time that we restart the practice of showing kindness to others around us because you just never know when that person may come around in time to be kind to you. The kindness you bestow on others will come back to you when you need it.
Father, thank you for the many blessings you’ve bestowed upon me. You have shown me more kindness in this life than I have ever deserved or could ever repay if that were possible. You told us through Paul that the gifts of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, gentleness, humility, faithfulness, and self-control. That goodness is the same as kindness. It is not always easy to be kind to others because people attack with their words and thoughts and deeds. They come at us with incessant hatred and dislike for you, but you teach us to love our neighbors even when they do the most reviling things against us. Please teach me to show kindness to any and all people who come into my life whether as an acquaintance, friend, family, or foe. I want to be more like my Lord Jesus who said that he is meek and lowly and has the Spirit of joy upon him. May my life look more like him daily. I love you Father, I thank you for the love you showed me through Jesus, and I am grateful that you gave me a comforter/teacher/guide to keep me on the right path. May your will be done on earth as it is heaven, not mine. In Jesus’ name, Amen.