Unsinkable / Day 9

BIBLE READING

Acts 28: 1-2

Once safely on shore, we found out that the island was called Malta. The islanders showed us unusual kindness. They built a fire and welcomed us all because it was raining and cold.

1 Corinthians 4: 12-13

We work hard with our own hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it; when we are slandered, we answer kindly.

1 Corinthians 13: 4

...love is kind.

Galatians 5: 22

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness….

Ephesians 4: 32

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

REFLECTION

For the next few days we will finish up looking at what happened in the immediate aftermath of the intense storm Paul has survived.

They all swim ashore and discover they are on the island of Malta. Look at what we read:

“The islanders showed us unusual kindness. They built a fire and welcomed us all because it was raining and cold.”

Sometimes God sends us just the right people when we need it most. People who aren’t just nice or polite but they show us unusual kindness. They go out of their way to help us. Nothing is too much trouble.

In a world where no one wants to be inconvenienced or interrupted wouldn’t it be great if we became known as a people of unusual kindness? Not just towards those from whom we can get something in return but real genuine kindness towards the vulnerable, the lonely, the lost and the outsider.

Max Lucado says this:

“Want to snatch a day from the manacles of boredom? Do overgenerous deeds, acts beyond reimbursement. Kindness without compensation. Do a deed for which you cannot be repaid.”

Kindness looks like something, it’s more than just a sentimental feeling. In this case it’s raining and cold outside so the islanders build Paul and the others a fire. They offer practical help to meet an immediate physical need.

That expresses something of the underlying purpose of ‘10,000 Hours’ which will take place throughout the month of July. This is a way for us to demonstrate kindness to our community through practical acts of service such as painting, cleaning, building and repairing. Immediate needs are met with the prayerful hope that ultimately hearts will be healed and lives restored.

In carrying out these acts of kindness we are simply expressing the heart of God. In Ephesians 2: 7 Paul talks about the:

“...incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.”

Titus 3: 4-5 puts it like this:

“….when the kindness and love of God our Saviour appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.”

Our God is so incredibly kind. He reached out to us when we had done nothing to deserve it. He sent His son to rescue us when we drowning in sin and shame. He sought us and saved us when we had gone our own way in rebellion and rejection of His love. He welcomed us home with open arms and a loving embrace.

It’s His kindness that we express to others, even when we think they don’t deserve it, knowing that without God's extravagant kindness being shown to us, we’d be lost and without hope. It was His kindness that led us to repentance. (Rom 2: 4) And it could well be His kindness, expressed through us, that leads our community to repentance and faith in Jesus. As one writer said:

“Kindness has converted more sinners than zeal, eloquence, or learning.” (Frederick W. Faber)

If you haven’t yet registered for 10,000 Hours, you can sign up today using this link:

https://10000.causewaycoastvineyard.com/