Read:  Ruth 2

         Our world is hungry for acts of kindness!  In a time in which social media rears its ugly head time and time again, we need people who will step up and pronounce encouraging, uplifting, compassionate, and kind words to people.  We hear way too much discouragement.  We need more kindness in the world.

Back in 1982, Anne Herbert coined a simple phrase that caught on.  Random Acts of Kindness (RAOK).  The idea took root, and then took off.  In 1992 a book was published with that title and imagined a world filled with an outbreak of random kindness being shared from one human to another.  The book became an instant best-seller and gave birth to many movements that encouraged people to share kindness on a daily basis.

Long before that book was published there was another book that encourages this kind of life as well.  The Bible gives us many stories, examples, and encouragements to bless others with kindness, care, and compassion.  In the book of Ruth we see how the successful businessman Boaz shared his kindness with Ruth and Naomi.  He provided for their needs and made them feel welcomed among strangers.

In the Gospels we see many examples of this kindness in the life of Jesus.  Paul and James encourage us often to show compassion to the widow, orphan, and those in need.  These examples are reminders that the Christian life should flow freely with random acts of kindness.  William Penn once said, “I expect to pass through life once.  If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow-being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again.”

 My prayer is that our acts of kindness become normal and not just random.  I would love to open up Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram each day and see words of hope, kindness, and encouragement instead of negativity and hatred.  Let’s be the ones to lead the way!

 Make it Personal:  
How is your kindness scale reading these days?  We all have days that seem better than others.  Try to use kindness as a way of brightening the day of another, so that your day too can be brightened.  May your Random Acts of Kindness (RAOK) then turn into Normal Acts of Kindness (NAOK).

Have a great week, Pastor Glen Rhodes
Arthur Mennonite Church, 710 E. Park St.