March 19, 2012

Thinking About God's Kindness

Ephesians 2:1-10

God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance.
—Romans 2:4


Within one week I met kindness at least four times.

A colleague commented that Plato urged, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”

I read that playwright Douglas Jerrold (1803-1857) described a man so kind that “he would have held an umbrella over a duck in a shower of rain.”

Someone remembered a sermon in which I had said, “Perhaps the most important thing to look for in a potential spouse is kindness.”

And in The New World, a film about the Native American princess Pocahontas, she asks John Rolfe, “Are you kind?”

Human kindness is a dim reflection of God’s kindness. In a lengthy discourse on our sin and God’s wrath, Paul wrote, “Do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness … not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?”

We have lost hard battles with sin. But Christ’s umbrella is cross-shaped, protecting us from a deluge of God’s just wrath. God, our Father, is kind beyond measure. Why? “In order that … he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.”

Lent is a good time to reflect on God’s kindness.

Jesus, thank you for holding the umbrella of your grace over us. Thank you for your everlasting kindness and faithfulness. In your name we hope. Amen.

About the author — Dale Vander Veen

Dale Vander Veen is a retired Christian Reformed pastor who with his wife, Edith, has ministered in California, Washington, and Michigan. They have three married children and six grandchildren. He currently writes a daily e-mail series of devotions.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!