The Kindness Habit: Second Tuesday in Lent

Part 2 Jesus Shows Kindness to Those Close to Him: Jesus Heals Peter’s Mother-in-Law

As a woman, every time I read this story, I am struck by the fact Peter’s MIL immediately got out of a sick bed & began taking care of her guests. Everyone just stood there & let the poor woman wait on them?!

Now, I know there is more to the story than just that. As any woman will tell you, if she is sick in bed with a fever & the fever breaks, she is still in no condition to get up & begin her regular routine. Fevers leave you weak & it takes awhile to come back from them The fact this woman was able to get out of bed right away too begin waiting on her guests demonstrates the total healing done by Jesus. Her fever was not only broken, she was also returned to full strength, her health returned to her.

This act was such a kindness on the part of Jesus & not just to the sick woman. Consider the last time you had a family member who was sick in bed & you had to leave them, perhaps to go to work. It’s difficult to focus on the job at hand when you are worried about a family member. Jesus showed kindness to Peter by healing his MIL, easing Peter’s worry so he could focus on the work he was doing with Jesus. Jesus wants us to know He is caring for our families while we are fulfilling the work He has called us to do.

This is also a lesson for supervisors. When my daughter, Katy was little, she developed chicken pox. I was in retail management &, after taking her to the doctor, I went back to work. Mr. D was at home with Katy. When my store manager found out Katy was sick, he sent me home with my work & told me to stay with Katy until she was well. This was a Godly man who knew what was important.

The people, including children, around you may have worries that you know nothing about. Take time to discover their concerns, then help them with those issues so they are able to focus on the other areas of their lives.

The Kindness Habit: Second Monday in Lent

Part 2 Jesus Shows Kindness to Those Close to Him: The Wedding at Cana

I absolutely LOVE teaching this story! I add to it but I don’t think I go overboard with my rendition. It strikes me the exchange between Mary & her Son had to be more involved than John lets on. The facial expressions alone add significantly to the story. It takes a mother to really tell this story.

Mary, Jesus, & His disciples are at a family wedding. Mary takes Jesus aside & points out they have run out of wine. Now, 2 things to know: these weddings often went on for DAYS; & the best wine was served first since no one noticed the quality of the wine after they had been drinking for HOURS!

So, Mary tells Jesus they are running out of wine & Jesus, knowing immediately where this is going, points out to His mother that it is not His time yet so there is nothing He can do. Mary ignores Him & tells the servants to do as Jesus tells them. Then she walks away. Jesus has the servants fill clay jugs with water, draw some off, & take it to the man in charge of the banquet. This man tastes what they bring him, water now turned to wine. The wine is the best he has ever tasted & he praises the father of the bride for saving the best for last.

Short & sweet. Hmm. The way I see it, Jesus argued or a bit with His mother, basically telling her He wasn’t going to use His ability to do parlor tricks. He came to do more important things. Mary, like any mother, gives Him THE LOOK! She then turns to the servants & tells them to follow His instructions. As she walks away, she turns to give Jesus one more look. Jesus signs, knows what He must do, & does as His mother asks. And He does it well. The best wine ever!

Everything else aside, Jesus showed a tremendous kindness to this family. It would have bee incredibly embarrassing for them to run out of wine before the wedding celebration was over. He could have turned the water into so-so wine. No one expected good wine to be served this late in the celebration. Jesus didn’t do this. Once Jesus decided to help the family, He did the right thing. He didn’t just make wine, He made the BEST wine. And this was a tremendous kindness, not just to the family but also to His mother.

Sometimes we are asked to do something to help out & we just don’t want to, for whatever reason. How can we do anything less than Jesus, stepping up & sharing our talents with others. While it might seem like a minor thing to us, it may mean the world to them.

Happy Monday & March!

The Kindness Habit: Second Saturday in Lent

Part 1 The Power of Kindness: Jesus Brought Kindness to ALL People

Studying the ministry of Jesus, I learn His focus, His mission was on one thing: the Kingdom of God. Jesus wanted to not just preach but show the Kingdom of God to the people. He wanted them to understand what this meant. to me, Kingdom of God can be summed up in 2 words: love & kindness. Everything Jesus did was out of love & in kindness to the people. He mostly focused on the Jews however, Jesus was kind to everyone.

Now you might be thinking, “Sure He was kind to everyone. He’s Jesus.” True but kindness was not in great supply in those days. In fact, I can see where kindness might be seen as a weakness, allowing others to take advantage of a kind individual or bring them harm. This was a dangerous society & people had to be careful.

Not only were things harsh in society, things were harsh within their faith. There were rules, lots of rules that had to be followed & one these concerned sacrifices. When people went to the Temple, they brought a sacrifice & if they didn’t bring one, well, they could buy one from one of the vendors doing business at the Temple. Make you sacrifice, clean yor slate & you are good to go until next time. As you can see, this didn’t bring about transformative change in believers & that is what Jesus was looking for, change.

In this story, Jesus had just shared dinner with the tax collectors & sinners only to be criticized by the Pharisees for hanging out with such bad, bad people. Jesus lays them out in lavender. Love that expression! He tells them He didn’t come to hang out with good people because they don’t need Him. He came to help those that no one else would help. He came to show kindness to those that most needed it, the outcasts. Now Jesus was kind to everyone, but, unlike the Pharisees & others in society who only showed kindness to people like themselves.

Jesus transformed the world with love & kindness. He is asking us to do the same today. We may see kindness a a sign of weakness but then we must ask ourselves, How weak do we consider Jesus to be? He set an example for us. Now we must go & do likewise.

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