When the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. Titus 3:4-5
"Cleanliness is next to godliness" goes an old saying. It may be true, but Saint Peter states that the Christian life is filled with many different characteristics. In that list, kindness is next to godliness. Where is kindness in our lives?
We often find it easy to be kind to those who are kind to us. Waiting for others to act first with generosity and friendliness makes it easy for us to respond in kind. We need take no risks that way. Such action, lacking in initiative, is actually motivated by selfishness.
The Christian lives by a different motive. By God's grace given to us through His Word and Baptism, we receive a new heart. We live by a different set of values. We have different goals. Faith in Jesus, our Savior, works by love and many other virtues: goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, kindness, and love. These qualities are gifts from God, but Saint Peter says that we must make every effort to add them to our lives. Lack of them makes us nearsighted, blind, ineffective, unproductive, and forgetful. Having them allows us to participate in Christ's mission.
PRAYER: Thank You, dear Father, for giving us everything we need for life and godliness. We trust Your promises to us; for Jesus' sake. Amen.
(Devotions from "The Abundant Life" copyright 1998, CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. Permission is granted for one-time e-mailing of this link to a friend. For information on other devotional material, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit CPH at www.cph.org.)
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