Help us remember that we have chosen to be kind and to be civil, to listen before we speak, so that those who do not know your love will see it shining through us.I liked it so much, I quickly typed it into my notes app so that I could share it with the blog.
"Help us remember that we have chosen to be kind and to be civil." Do you ever consider that kindness and civility are a choice? Do you intentionally choose to practice kindness? I think for many of us, kindness is often our response, but we don't always see it as an intentional choice. Sometimes it is difficult to be kind, and our first response is not kindness. It is at that point that it becomes difficult to choose another path. It becomes difficult to choose civility over hurtfulness. We want to lash out; we want to return hurt for hurt. At that point, the word "choose" becomes very important and clear to us. It is at that point that we are called to choose kindness and civility.
Do we listen before we speak? Do we listen at all? Often, I know that I am planning my next words while someone else is speaking - that prevents listening, I think. While I may be able to hear the person speaking, I'm not considering what he or she is saying; I'm automatically countering it. We need to choose to listen before we speak.
And what will be the result? Those who do not know God's love will see it shining through. Amen.