Photo via Visual Hunt
No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us. 1 John 4:12 NLT
“Random Acts of Kindness” has become a real catch phrase lately. You see it everywhere. In the Kingdom of God, however, I’m not sure there are any “random” acts of kindness. Allow me to explain what I mean…
What Are We Talking About?
Random acts of kindness can be defined as something a person does for someone they know, or for a complete stranger, in order to help them out or simply brighten their day. These “random” acts can take many forms. One popular story circulating around the web is of patrons at a local coffee shop purchasing “suspended coffee” for the poor and homeless (see the story here). There are whole websites devoted to the concept. Some local newspapers even have sections in them where people can share their experiences of being on the receiving end of these kind deeds.
But in the Kingdom?
But do random acts of kindness happen in the Kingdom of God? Personally, I don’t think so. Why not? Because those of us who live in the Kingdom have completely devoted our lives to performing the will of King. As a result, the King is constantly working out His will in our lives through His Holy Spirit. That is the meaning behind Philippians 2:13.
For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. NLT
The Holy Spirit will lead and energize us to do kind acts, but there will be nothing random about them. These acts will be specifically targeted to doing a work in the lives of those who are on the receiving end. They will be a great blessing to us as well.
A Personal Story
Allow me to share a story from my own life that I believe will illustrate what I am trying to say.
I don’t know about you, but I never pick up hitchhikers.
Did you get that?
One day, however, I was on my way back to Canada after an extended ministry trip to my home state of Kansas (please, no Wizard of Oz questions). As I pulled up to a stop sign out it the middle of nowhere, I noticed a pickup truck pull over on the opposite side of the intersection and let a hitchhiker out. I had every intention of blowing by him like he wasn’t even there (I know, not too Christian!). But as I drove across the road to where he was standing, I suddenly found myself pulling my car off the road and stopping! I lowered my window and asked him where he was heading. Come to find out, he was going to the same town in South Dakota where I intended to spend the night. I invited him to hop in.
That was the beginning of a whole day spent showing this man the love of God. I listened as he told about a life that had definitely known some rough times. I bought him lunch (he was going to eat cold soup out of a can). When we reached our destination, the Lord told me to give him a certain amount of cash. He choked up as I put the money in his hand. He then went his way and I went mine.
While this event might be classified by some as a random act of kindness, there was nothing random about it. It was a specific event orchestrated by King Jesus so He could show His love to this individual. And please don’t think this story is about what a good person I am because it had nothing to do with me. I don’t pick up hitchhikers, remember?
Follow the Promptings
I believe acts of kindness should be one of the streams of living water that flows from the lives of the Kings subjects. So let me encourage you to following the prompting that urges you to pay for someone else’s lunch at the restaurant. Follow the nudge to write someone a note of encouragement to lift their spirits. Follow that sudden notion to visit that Senior Citizen in the nursing home. These promptings, random though they may seem to be, are actually the Spirit of God directing you to show the King’s kindness to others. This is the normal way of doing life for those who are truly living in the Reign.