COVID-19: Be Kind
Hey Parents :) How are you doing?
I feel funny writing an article to put into cyber space with every other human at this time, but our team felt like this needs to be a space for parents to be encouraged. So I’ll keep it brief, and hope you’ll get a chance to read it between your more critical life happenings…like buying coffee beans for online delivery!
Be Kind. Part 1
Hey! Have you heard? We are in a pandemic!
For some of you this is an earth-shattering reality. Jobs are lost, you will not be getting a babysitter for date night anytime soon, and you have real concerns about the health of people in your life.
For some, this is a change, but maybe not as intense. Yet, you carry the weight of the world, watching the news and hearing of others’ heartache.
For everyone, we mean it when we say, “we are in this together, apart.” All of your feelings are real, and having those feelings is valid. So now what?
Ephesians 4:32 reads, “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another just as God also forgave you in Christ.” (CSB)
Our lives have narrowed in on our home happenings…the place where we live, work, do school, daycare and socialization. ”Zoom” is a new vocab word!
One major struggle at the Duffey home is between our girls (6 & 7), trying to get what they want when they want it. They are getting on each other’s nerves…and ours! At first we tried, “be kind,” but the day we came across Ephesians 4:32, we tried a new approach that’s helped a lot.
*Disclaimer: there is no vaccine to prevent imperfect children or parents, but a 2 minute conversation that acknowledges we are imperfect and highlights God’s grace in the face of that imperfection is the biggest win in this family!*
Here’s how it looks.
“She yelled at me and I didn’t do anything!” says one girl. We respond, “that wasn’t nice that she did that. But I know I make mistakes and you probably make mistakes too…right? The Bible says, we should be kind because Jesus was kind to us when we didn’t deserve it. So even though what she did was wrong, can you find a way to forgive her and not try to get her back?”
I know, you could try this and it may NOT go as planned as they argue with you about, “but she!” But try it, or something like it. Be consistent and prayerful as you coach your kids not on how to be perfect, but on how to love others because we are imperfect.
This is a great time to pause the reading and check on dinner or respond to that text. Then come back for how this verse applies to adults.
Be Kind. Part 2.
Ok, now to grown-up woes. I’m finding this verse speaks to my heart.
Again, Ephesians 4:32 reads, “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another just as God also forgave you in Christ.” (CSB)
Who can I be compassionate towards? Who can I forgive because I’ve been forgiven?
What about that person on Next Door that says ugly things? I’ve said ugly things to people. I can be kind when I interact with that person.
What about you? How about your spouse, who doesn’t handle every situation like you would want, the RIGHT way, of course. He or she is probably thinking the same thing about you. Be kind, you are just doing your best and so are they.
Your company? Maybe they didn’t treat you well during this season. They’ve never been through a pandemice before now. Be kind.
Your clients? Man, people are snippy during a pandemic. Oh wait, I’ve found myself stressed out and short-tempered before. Be kind.
This isn’t a cry to avoid conflict resolution. This is just a reminder, to search our hearts and change our perspectives before we respond.
As Easter approaches, let us all remember that Jesus did not do ANYTHING wrong, yet He chose kindness towards the whole human race. He chose to be put on that cross and he chose to stay there. He, in all ways, is the perfect example of showing kindness.
Praying God’s best for you! HannahLee J
How do we respond to his kindness?
We accept the amazingly-kind gift from Jesus Christ and submit our lives to follow him. Check out “Knowing Jesus” here.
Already a follower of Jesus? Who is one person you need help being kind to? Pray for God to help you.
We want to pray for you. Email prayer requests to firstname.lastname@example.org. No prayer is too big or too small for God.
HannahLee Duffey is the Minister to Children at Hyde Park Baptist Church in Austin Texas. She is married to Bryan and has 3 kids. She likes coffee, everything Christmas, the color pink, dancing and smiling…it’s her favorite!