I know - I just wrote a post about kindness back in January! Even so, after witnessing Congresswoman Lauren Boebert heckle the President of the United States during his State of the Union Address earlier this week, I felt compelled to speak on the subject again. Unfortunately, incidents of people being unkind and nasty to each other seem to be happening with more and more frequency these days.
According to the Mayo Clinic, "Kindness is more than behavior. The art of kindness means harboring a spirit of helpfulness, as well as being generous and considerate, and doing so without expecting anything in return. Kindness is a quality of being. The act of giving kindness often is simple, free, positive and healthy." (See The art of kindness)
The same article informs us that kindness has positive physiological and psychological impacts on human health. In addition to increasing self-esteem and improving our mood, it appears that kindness can also lower blood pressure and reduce stress! Apparently, kindness can also "boost" the levels of serotonin and dopamine in our brains and engender feelings of satisfaction and well-being. Thus, medical science has demonstrated that kindness can provide tangible health benefits for those who practice it!
For those of us who are Christians, we know that kindness is one of the "fruits" or evidences of the presence of God's Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22, NLT). Likewise, Paul told the saints of Colosse that kindness was expected of God's elect (Colossians 3:12, NLT). A lot of people claim to be "Born-Again" Christians (including the congresswoman named above), but anyone who claims that moniker should ask themselves whether or not they are practicing the art of kindness as part of their normal, everyday routine. There are many good reasons for practicing kindness, and its absence may also be indicative of serious spiritual problems! Moreover, it usually doesn't take much effort to be kind, and I find that it is almost always appreciated by others.