September 24, 2023 | Doug Sauder
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“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”—Micah 6:8 (NIV)
One of the fruits of the Spirit we’ve been talking about is kindness, and one of the ways kindness is understood is through the idea of brotherly love. If you have a sibling, then you probably know what it feels like to love someone through all their flaws and in all stages of life. I have a younger brother who is one of my best friends! Growing up, we always had so much fun together, but we’d also argue and get annoyed with one another just like every other sibling. However, I still remember the frustration I felt on behalf of my brother whenever someone was mean to him in school. My instinct was to fight for him and stick up for him because of that brotherly love.
True kindness is similar to brotherly love because it’s more than just being nice. Kindness is a sense of responsibility and a duty. It doesn’t come from thinking someone deserves it; it comes from an overflow of Christ. Kindness is an intentional lifestyle and mindset of seeking to do what Jesus would do.
In today’s Scripture, we see kindness on display in the commands Micah instructs the Israelites with. In the verses right before these, the people question what kinds of sacrifices the Lord would be pleased with. In verse 8, Micah reassures the people that the Lord has already told the people what is good and what they should do to honor and obey Him. The following is the list Micah shares:
Justice is about what is right and making things right. God is perfectly just. We cannot be perfectly just because we are not God. However, we can act justly by submitting to God’s instructions and living with integrity. When we live this way, we’re intentionally seeking to honor God and others, and that is what real kindness is all about.
Mercy is when a deserved consequence isn’t given. God showered His mercy on us by sending Jesus to the cross for the punishment we deserve. Because we’ve been shown mercy, it’s our honor to show mercy to others. With the love and help of the Holy Spirit, we can extend kindness through our acts of mercy!
When we go on a walk with someone, our relationship with them normally grows deeper as we talk and connect. The best walk we’ll ever go on in this life is our continual walk with God. Take a step back to recognize that the God of the universe wants to walk with you daily because He loves you . . . let that humble you. Let that keep your heart in a place of gratitude so you can show kindness to others out of the abundant kindness of Christ!
Keeping in step with the Spirit means we’ll begin to lead lives that implement these practices. Allowing the fruit of kindness to be cultivated within us by spending time with Jesus daily will compel us to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.
Pause: Where have you experienced or shown brotherly love and kindness in your life before? What was it like?
Practice: Make it a point today to act with justice, mercy, and humility! Whatever it may look like, take every opportunity to intentionally be kind.
Pray: Jesus, thank You for being so kind to me. You are the perfect example of someone who acted justly, loved mercifully, and walked humbly. I ask You to help me live in the same way as I seek to become more like you. May Your Spirit continue to mold in me these qualities and grow in me the fruit of kindness. I love you Jesus! Amen.
Samy Rodriguez has been serving with the Calvary writing team since 2020 as a senior at Calvary Christian Academy. Before going to study communications, biblical studies, and intercultural studies at Palm Beach Atlantic University, she interned with the Calvary Communications Team and was a student leader in HSM (High School Ministry). She is passionate about communicating God’s Word and looks forward to continuing to serve in ministry after college.