The Fruit of the Spirit is Kindness

by Commissioner Evie Diaz
Territorial Commander

The fruit of the Spirit is kindness. As Christians, it’s hard to think about sharing kindness without being reminded of the kindness God has shown us. The Apostle Paul writes these beautiful words in Ephesians 2:7 (NLT): “So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.” What wonderful kindness we have experienced through the saving grace of Jesus!

There are many types of kindness, but the kindness Paul writes about is best revealed in our relationships with others. Anyone can be kind on occasion, but authentic kindness isn’t natural. The fruit of kindness that flows freely and generously is supernatural— Spirit-generated.

This kindness is expressed as a welcome to the stranger who walks through the corps doors on Sunday morning. Kindness can look like the soldier who sits with this newcomer and shows him or her that they belong. A Pathway of Hope caseworker kindly comes alongside a single mom struggling to balance children, finances and all the demands of life. Godly kindness is seen when an adult rehabilitation center officer cries with and for a resident who has relapsed one more time. The kind volunteer considers it a privilege to sit at the table with a family during the community dinner, helping with the kids and bringing a smile to a challenging situation.

At Territorial Headquarters, employees showed kindness by donating baby items for a struggling family in a nearby corps. At the Elgin Corps, a mom from Pakistan experienced kindness by a hug and a prayer from the corps officer. In Oak Creek, Wis., a new Senior Center opened where kindness is regularly expressed as a warm welcome and hospitality to everyone who comes.

This kindness is expressed because God’s Spirit is at work within us. Will you allow the Holy Spirit to touch others through your genuine acts of kindness? International Headquarters published a Lent 2024 series titled, An Act of Kindness. If you didn’t use it during Lent, I encourage you to use it this month. Let’s find ways to practice this kind of fruit.

Share how you are experiencing and expressing kindness in your community.

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But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Galatians 5:22-23 (NLT)

 

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