On Being Kind

“A kind man benefits himself, but a cruel person brings ruin on himself.”

Proverbs 11:17 (CSB)

He was a tightfisted taskmaster who had no warmth in his heart. His employees were afraid of him, and he shared nothing with others. Who is this man? His name was Ebenezer Scrooge.

Of course we all know this famous literary character from Charles Dickens’ novella, A Christmas Carol. When I read Proverbs 11:17, Scrooge came to mind. He is a perfect example of the idea that a cruel person brings ruin upon himself.

From Scrooge’s story, and God’s word, we know that cruel words and actions do not benefit anyone. The Bible reminds us that when we’re tempted to say something unkind, we can remember that kindness is the better way. Proverbs 12:25 tells us a kind word cheers up others. Proverbs 15:1 explains that a gentle answer turns away wrath. And Proverbs 16:24 describes pleasant words as “sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”

Kind words are important, but so are kind actions. Generosity is refreshing according to Proverbs 11:25. Those who give gifts are blessed according to Proverbs 18:16. And Proverbs 19:17 encourages us to be kind to the poor.

As we enter this busy Christmas season, we should remember who we are, and whose we are, and act accordingly. As Christians, we are held to a higher standard, but with the help of God’s Holy Spirit, we can be a light shining for Christ. And, when we mess up, as I’m sure we will at some point standing in a long line or feeling overwhelmed by the amount of things we think we need to do, let us remember there is always hope. After all, Scrooge started off miserly and cruel at the beginning of his tale but, by the end of the story, he wound up a kind and generous man with a new perspective on life!

I enjoy watching Christmas movies every year, and I have to admit The Muppet Christmas Carol is one of my favorites! Who doesn’t love Kermit the Frog as Bob Cratchit?

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