Kindness is a willful act. You do not act kindly automatically like how body organs do which are controlled by the autonomic nervous system. The heart involuntarily pumps blood to your system. Your eyes involuntarily blink when bright light flashes. These are automatic responses. But kindness do not come automatically. In truth, people can be biased in showing kindness. You choose the people you want to show kindness. Therefore, if you want to behave kindly to others, you have to will yourself to act kindly. Showing kindness then is a choice. Paul instructed the Christians in the City of Colossae who were predominantly Gentiles and having doctrinal problems at that time, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,” -Colossians 3;12. As a believer, chosen by God through the marvelous grace of Jesus Christ, you are instructed to put on kindness. The phrase “put on” connotes an idea of wearing something or adding something to your body. You put on or wear a clothing that you find most desirable. It is similar to putting on kindness. You have to find it pleasing to wear kindness in you. When you have received Jesus as your Lord and Savior by faith, you become a new creation with a new heart and new mind (2 Corinthians 5:17, Ezekiel 11:19). However, this must be continuously be evident through faithful obedience. Putting on kindness, then, is an act of obedience to God.
Wear kindness with pleasure and confidence. I used to buy some magazines featuring my favorite showbiz stars. I see their picture plastered on the front page with all their glamour and beauty. They wear expensive and branded clothing from the tip of their head to the soles of their feet. Such pride and pleasure you see in their face. Of course, anyone wearing Balenciaga, Prada, Armani, or Christian Dior (to name a few high-end brands) would truly be exuding confidence and exhilaration at any time and in any occasion. The thing is, if you wear kindness, would you feel that same confidence and pleasure of wearing it? Are you confident to wear it at any time and any occasion? When your co-worker turns his grumpy mood on you and spills out pricking words of displeasure against you, can you keep wearing that kindness? Or are you going back to your closet to change your clothing branded as “spiteful”? When your boss is arrogant and demeaning, can you still put on kindness? When your spouse can be so irritating, can you still wear kindness? When a churchmate becomes insensitive to your feelings, can you still keep up with kindness? When you are confronted with great need, but you are also asked to give, can kindness win? These are only some of the difficult scenarios which actually happen. In truth, it would be an ideal person to be able to put up with these kind of situations. I, for one, could hardly deal with these displeasures without some grumblings of my own. But when the Word of God instructs you to put on kindness and all other virtues, it only means, it is not an impossibility to be kind even in trying circumstances. It may be difficult, but it is not impossible. Because you are to put on a new nature; the nature of Christ. “But that is not the way you learned Christ!— assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds,” -Ephesians 4:20-23. But you might say, “It is just too difficult for me. I cannot find the grace to be kind to difficult people or in difficult situations.” Yes, you can! As long as it is your desire to obey Jesus. Remember God’s comfort to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” -2 Corinthians 12:9. Tap on the abundant grace of God for you and rely on Him so you can put on kindness with confidence and great pleasure even in difficult situations. Anything good that you desire to do and anything good in you comes from God. “For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” -Philippians 2:13.