Remember A Spirit of Kindness in Our Quest for Strength
March 30, 2019
There’s something important in our quest for strength and courage, and that’s a spirit of kindness. Too often we teach our children the verse, “Be kind one to another” (Eph. 4:32 RSV). Then we forget the admonition as adults. True forgiveness and kindness are cut from the same cloth. It is impossible to demonstrate one without declaring the other.
I find it interesting that the word kind comes from the Old English cynd for kin or family. Ironically, family is a place where kindness is too often in such short supply. It’s within the home where we first learn to recognize important familial boundaries. It is where we develop a deep respect for others. Yet how especially difficult it is to embrace those people associated with ghostly encounters from our past.
A Prayer That Can Help
It can be difficult for you to be kind to those who have hurt you. Consider praying this prayer that has helped me on so many occasions:
Keep me, O God, from pettiness; let me be large in thought, in word, in deed. As I look into my past with its pain and fear, may I see my hurt through the eyes of love. Let me be done with faultfinding and leave off self-seeking. May I put away all pretense and meet others face to face — without self-pity and without prejudice. May I never be hasty in my judgement, but generous. Let me take time for all things; make me grow calm, serene, gentle.
You did not create me to be burned out and exhausted but to be an effective person who does your bidding. Teach me to put into action my better impulses, straightforward and unafraid. Grant that I may realize that it is the little things that create differences, that in the big things of life we are as one. And, O Lord God, help me to recognize that if I would be strong again, I must always remember to be loving and kind. Amen.
Your Journey to Kindness Includes Forgiveness
Your road to becoming strong again must work through the whole series of past storms that have wreaked havoc on your body, soul, and spirit. But the good news is that you know you weathered those storms. They helped you grow in ways that you were not even aware and they have shaped you into the person you have now become.
Often it’s only when our eyes have been washed clear with buckets of tears that we will ever get a handle on the larger vision for ourselves and our place in the world. Although you may never fully understand why or how the storms of your past have freshened the air you breathe today, you can find a healthy, new perspective. It will grant you the freedom to take time to think, play, read, dream, laugh, and pray.
Dr. Gregory Jantz is the founder of The Center • A Place of HOPE in Edmonds, Washington, voted a top ten facility for the treatment of depression in the United States. Dr. Jantz pioneered Whole Person Care in the 1980’s and is a world-renowned expert on eating disorders, depression, anxiety, technology addiction, and abuse. He is a leading voice and innovator in Mental Health utilizing a variety of therapies including nutrition, sleep therapy, spiritual counseling, and advanced DBT techniques. Dr. Jantz is a best-selling author of 37 books and has appeared on CBS, ABC, NBC, Fox, and CNN.
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