Years ago, when I was a private caregiver for the elderly, family members would often interview me to see if I was the right person for the job. When I’d answer their questions regarding my training, I often said, “I’m not a CNA (certified nursing assistant), or an RN (registered nurse). I’m an ANP.”
I paused to allow them to search their memory before I finally solved the riddle: “A nice person.” They chuckled as I pointed to my nametag: Sheryl H. Boldt, ANP.
To be honest, my nametag was more of an icebreaker than a true testimony of my personality. If it wasn’t for the work of God in my heart and His kindness toward me, I would be a NANP (not a nice person).
Are you an ANP or a NANP? If you need help in the “kindness” department, you’re not alone.
This week, as we continue to work our way through 1 Corinthians 13:4, one challenge per week, we’ll discuss the second challenge listed in verse 4: kindness. “Love is patient and kind …” (ESV).
In some cases, acting in a caring and considerate way can indeed be challenging. To exhibit a genuinely kind response when we feel anything but kind takes effort. It’s worth the effort, though, because a world without kindness would be a dreadfully mean world.
Thankfully, kindness is contagious.
When we see the flight attendant respond charitably to a rude passenger, it motivates us. Even witnessing something as simple as a scene in a movie in which someone offers food to a homeless person affects us.
In the same way, our kind acts influence others.
As God’s kindness draws us to Him, so our kindness (a reflection of God’s nature) can draw people to us. Kindness – or lack of kindness – can change the atmosphere in marriages, our homes, and our communities.
By the way, while many still consider me an ANP, I must humbly admit that I know several ENPs (even nicer people)!
Heavenly Father, help us reflect Your loving kindness more and more in the midst of today’s increasingly unkind culture. May we respond with Your love when we see a person in need in our homes and our communities. As we serve one another, let us experience the joy that kindness brings – and be forever changed by it. Amen.
What about you?
I’d love to hear your thoughts about this post. (Others might also benefit from your comment.)
- Have you been encouraged to show kindness after seeing someone extend kindness to a person in need?
- How has God’s loving kindness changed you?
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