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Romans 12: Living Life

Study 13: Gift of Kindness & Mercy

8 And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.

This could also be the gift of Mercy… We know that God is a God of mercy and kindness, therefore those who claim to follow Him, must also be cheerfully kind to others. Some people have an extraordinary capacity to be kind and merciful to people they meet who are in need – they certainly have this gift! They give a WOW about God. People like Mother Theresa.

However, all Christians should seek to be kind and merciful. This would include visiting the sick, caring for the elderly, sick and disabled, the unemployed, orphans, widows, the destitute. It could simply be a listening ear, a smile or a kind word at the right time to somebody. One way to do it cheerfully and gladly is to do it as a generous thanksgiving to God. If you are to help people with kindness and mercy, show you are happy to help! The word Paul uses here is hilaroteti. We get the word ‘hilarious’ from it! Laughter can be good medicine when used appropriately! As Calvin said “to observe sadness in the countenance of those by whom assistance is given, makes them to feel themselves despised.

How are you and your church being kind and merciful to people in need? How are those you know who are housebound being shown kindness? Are you and the church using imagination to be kind and merciful – helping people to be a part of the church community? How can you help with kindness and mercy those who are unemployed and looking for work? Let each of us use our imaginations to help those in need with kindness and mercy.

I read today of a homeless man who died in one of the richest parts of London. As he died, he fell and was found dead impaled on fence railings. The link to the story is here. Imagine if that man had been shown genuine kindness and mercy? To be fair, he may have rejected any kindness towards him. I don’t know. But I do know that we sometimes reject the kindness and mercy of people out of pride instead of accepting with gratitude and humility. I know I am like that sometimes!

Go! Be cheerfully kind and merciful. Thank you.


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