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Kindness Challenge Devotional

31
Nov
Kindness Challenge Devotional

This is the final devotional in the November Kindness Challenge. We begin a new Advent Devotional series Monday, December 4th. Sign up at the end of this reflection to receive daily devotionals in your inbox.


Scripture: Romans 2:4

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?


TRUTH FOR TODAY: God calls us to goodness


“Goodness is ‘God-ness'”


A few months ago San Pedro gave children WWJD (what would Jesus do?) bracelets. A little digging indicates the idea started as an informal movement by a youth leader in the1990s. If you haven’t seen one of the bracelets, they were wildly popular and are still available for purchase from a variety of organizations. The red one I'm wearing is shown in the top image.


As wearing the bracelet coincided with the November Kindness Challenge, I made a mental note to connect seeing it on my arm to be a reminder about kindness. Specifically, whenever the bracelet popped into my field of view, I did a mental check-up about the month’s theme:


People you encounter are functioning to the best of their ability, based on their current level of awareness.


As we wrap up the November Kindness Challenge, I'm pondering three key takeaways: 


  • 1) There are more “good” things in the world than what news agencies report on a daily basis. 

Also in the top image is a picture of a project that a member of my faith community posted. He’s put this project together twice now. It’s a simple call to meet and clean up a public area that becomes an eye sore with garbage. It’s a good thing! We can all do more good things that are expressions of kindness, goodness and grace.


  • 2) We need constant reminders to live by God-ness standards. 

The bracelet helps, but like all reminders this one will fade in efficacy. At some point I won’t notice it. Being a part of a faith community puts us in the company of people who, if we take the time to notice, are themselves God-given reminders to follow Jesus in the practices of generosity and gratitude. 


  • 3) Seasons of faith are effective when we choose to embrace them. 

The church has set aside seasons throughout the calendar year for preparation, reflection and action. We are approaching Advent, the time to reflect on the true “reason for the season” in Jesus Christ. What message series does your church put together that is unique to your faith community? And how might you truly participate in teachings that complement the larger church calendar (Advent, Lent, Holy Week, Easter, etc.)?


Be challenged to gear up for Christmas by focusing your attention on Jesus and the gift of Christ in the days before Christmas.


Goodness is a form of “God-ness” when it points hearts, minds and action towards a kinder world.


On a final note, I take a study leave during this time of year after Thanksgiving and before Christmas. I haven’t found my place to get away yet, but when I do I’ll need somebody to give my oldest son a ride to school. As an experiment I put out a request on Nextdoor to see if anybody might help. Within an hour I had six responses from folks in my San Antonio neighborhood who were willing to let him ride with their kids to school. It's a final reminder as we wrap up the Kindness challenge: there is more kindness in the world than we realize. 


Look for kindness. Spread kindness. And celebrate kindness whenever you get a reminder from Holy Spirit. 


PRAYER: “Lord, it’s your kindness that leads your people to new life. Nurture a spirit of kindness in me. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.”


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