Kindness – it isn’t rocket science

Sometimes being kind may seem easier said than done, especially if someone is behaving unkindly toward us. But recognizing that all of God’s children are created to be loving empowers us to express – and experience – kindness more freely in our interactions.

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Years ago I had a boxer dog and a rescue cat who just loved each other. When that dog passed and I got a hound mix, my cat tried to continue her affectionate behavior. But this dog was a different story! He chased her every chance he got and displayed aggressiveness.

My cat, on the other hand, never changed. She just kept expressing love, patience, and persistence, and over time the two enjoyed many peaceful moments together.

This got me thinking about a time when a business associate became very unkind toward me, even calling me some very unpleasant names. Not only was this hurtful, but it was in fact the very opposite of how I was feeling and behaving toward him. It took a great deal of prayer to find the humility to think calmly and clearly about the situation.

One day it occurred to me that God already made me to be loving. It’s part of who I am as God’s child, entirely spiritual. And this is true for everybody.

Living from this basis more consistently does take getting to know ourselves as spiritual, instead of as human beings with good and bad qualities. In one of her writings, the founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, described the “scientific response” to the question “What am I?” as, “I am able to impart truth, health, and happiness, and this is my rock of salvation and my reason for existing” (“The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany,” p. 165).

I realized I didn’t have to try to change my associate, or get him to adhere to my agenda. I just had to express my God-given kindness, honesty, and willingness to work together. That’s it. It wasn’t rocket science.

I’m not saying that pride didn’t try to rear its head sometimes. But when we’re humbly willing to yield to God, expressing Godlike qualities in our lives becomes more natural. And I will say that it worked: Not only did our interactions improve, but to this day, over 10 years later, this man and I remain friends.

Because we are spiritual, we are built to love. When we remember that and live it, we’ll see progress – and bonds that unite rather than division.

Adapted from the July 28, 2022, Christian Science Daily Lift podcast.

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