Beyond Appearances — A LifeWords Devotion – Hope 103.2

Beyond Appearances — A LifeWords Devotion

A kindness mindset tilts us towards seeking to understand what is going on rather than merely judging what is literally confronting us.

By David ReayThursday 6 Aug 2020LifeWords DevotionalsDevotionsReading Time: 2 minutes

Ephesians 4:32

Be kind to each other, be understanding. Be as ready to forgive others as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you. (JBP)

The writer Stephen Covey tells the story of what happened on a New York subway train. A man got on the train with two young children who were, to say the least, rowdy. Their father seemed to make no attempt to control or discipline them.

Finally, a fellow passenger spoke up and politely asked the man to do something about his children who were running riot in the carriage. “Oh I am so sorry”, he replied. “I just can’t seem to do anything about them. You see, we have just come back from the hospital where their mother has just died.”

All changed. What appeared to be uncontrollable children with an uncaring parent became a family tragedy. Of course the father was distracted. Of course the children were ill behaved. Behind the apparently poor family behaviour was a family who were grieving and not sure about how to express it.

Which leads to the subject of kindness. We are urged to be kind and understanding, and the two go together. Once we understand the situation in front of us, we are more inclined to be kind. There may well be another story behind the grumpy façade, the sullen expression, the angry outbursts.

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A kindness mindset tilts us towards seeking to understand what is going on rather than merely judging by what is literally confronting us. Kindness allows us to go beyond appearances.

Blessings

David