I HAVE DECIDED…


I recently said that to a group of people, and one scoffed and said, “What’s new about that?”  Nothing and everything would be the appropriate response, but you deserve to know what I am addressing and referring to.  While each of us makes decisions daily and often multiple times each day, sometimes something stands out that captures the imagination.

We are in December, the last month of the year 2022.  In many ways, I am glad to see it go into the record books and turn the page for 2023.  However, with some hesitation, I am hopeful for the coming year.  I keep hoping the elected officials will somehow discover a spine, a moral fiber in their soul, and become devotees of the document they swear an oath to protect and defend, the Constitution. 

But my Christian faith is rising to the surface as I present my decision in this article.  My beliefs form my convictions, my ideological views, and my worldview.  I am not compartmentalized and do not have spiritual, relational, financial, or political compartments – I am a composite of all I believe and think.  Everything is rooted in and connected to my belief in God, His Precepts, and His Word. 

I have been thinking about kindness and how impactful acts of kindness usually are.  Some today are jealous of everything and covetous of anything possessed by others if they do not have it.  They are proponents of sharing the wealth unless it is their wealth, then the view is what is mine and mine alone.  When I see kindness acts or am the recipient of an act of kindness, I am always moved deeply.  It inspires me to reciprocate by extending kindness to others who need empathy or compassion. 

We are in the Christmas month, and everywhere we see the commercialization and promotions for gifts and things to buy.  It is the latest, greatest, and most desired thing known to man, and surely you want one or know someone who would love to have one.  Commercialization has been developed into a science, and marketing is continuously honed scientifically to attract the most buyers.  The idea of Christmas as being a celebration of the Savior’s birth is obscured by things, things, and more things. 

The Bible teaches that giving is better than receiving, but as one man said, “Giving may be better than receiving, but I enjoy getting so much, I think I’ll stick with getting.”  That is the view of many, even if they do not realize it or acknowledge it.  I want, I want, and give to get is the root of many philosophies. Like the saying I heard long ago, “Get all you can, can all you get, sit on the lid and poison the rest.”  Greed is ugly, and covetousness is destructive!

That is not only present in society it is prevalent in politics, what is in it for me.  The view is seldom what is good for the whole of society but what it provides for the politician or their political party.  The government loves to appear benevolent by using the taxpayer’s money or borrowing beyond any hope of being able to repay.  Acts of government benevolence seldom have any resemblance to kindness.

Therefore, I want to put it into practice and inspire others to do at least one act of kindness daily.  I know that many do those multiple times per day, and I strive to be kind and show care and concern, but I seek to step that up and, through this Holiday Season, strive to do something unsolicited for someone.  I want to show Christian kindness and demonstrate Christ’s principle of giving not for the sake of getting but out of a genuine desire to bless others.

I am not a wealthy man in terms of this world’s goods, but I am rich beyond imagination in the Gift God has given me in Christ.  I am wealthy in friends and family.  I am wealthy in the opportunity to share His love and demonstrate His heart in simple acts that might seem almost inconsequential but can impact a life and possibly save their life or restore their belief in humanity. 

We all have people around us who are less fortunate than us.  Some may argue I do not; I am needier than anyone I know.  I have no desire to argue that point, but whenever I feel I am the neediest person I know, I inevitably meet or see someone more in need than I am.  I am asking the LORD to cause me to see needs and enable me to do something, even if it is as small as helping someone to their car, unloading their packages, or just offering an encouraging word.  Other times, it might be to buy some groceries for a struggling family I know.  It could be as simple as paying for someone’s meal in a restaurant.  There are many things we can do.  It could be a simple smile and greeting.

We have lost touch with our neighbors.  We have become so busy and focused on ourselves that we even lose contact with those within our households.  I have also decided that I am going to do something for others in the name of my immediate family.  They may receive a Christmas card telling them they gave something to a needy person.  If I do that, they may not appreciate that gesture, but hopefully, it would inspire them.  I did not say I will do nothing for them, but I will do the other as an act of kindness.

I would like to know what our nation would look like if we decided to be kind to one another and treat others as we would like others to treat us.  They may not be Christians and may not celebrate Christmas, that is not the point, but with our kindness, we can manifest something sorely missed in this world. Let’s start a trend that causes people to pause before hurling vitriolic insults and allowing hate to boil over in the heart.  We might find that our kindness became infectious, and rather than growing hate, we plant a harvest of civility.

I know I am not addressing America’s political needs and problems.  However, the issues in America politically, societally, socially, and economically are not likely to find resolution in legislation. If we recognize other people as fellow members of the human race who need kindness, we may break down walls and barriers and then impact the political. If people were less prone to hurl ideological daggers, we could restore America to a time from eons ago when people helped each other. Let’s turn back the clock and refresh the importance of individual rights. 

I hope I have not lost readers but instead inspired others to try this, may not daily but once per week or even once per month, and determine that you are going to do an overt act of kindness.  I know how it impacts me to receive kindness and how it impacts me when I give kindness.  I am rewarded far beyond what the cost might be.  There are many acts of kindness one can do that cost nothing.  As the saying of old, “Try it; you just might like it.”

God bless you, and God bless America!

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