Kindness and Humility
Have you ever thought about how difficult it is do receive kindness than to give it?
Earlier this week, I was in the grocery store and picked up four Cornish hens for Easter dinner. At checkout, I was told they had a limit on all meats right now and could only sell me two. I said, “OK, I’ll have to come back. I was just hoping to get all for Easter dinner now.” The lady who had checked out before me was still gathering her groceries and asked, “They will only give you two?” I said yes, because of the restrictions. She said, “I’m going to buy the other two for you.” She walked behind me in line, and I tried to tell her it wasn’t necessary. She insisted and told the clerk that she would be buying the other two for me. I did not protest much more because I knew that this was something that she needed to do.
I thanked her several times and she said, “Happy Easter. Enjoy your dinner.”
I am not sure I have ever been on the receiving side of such a random stranger act of kindness.
It started me thinking about receiving kindness and how do we learn to do that. Often, we show kindness because we see a need. Often, we hear stories of someone receiving kindness when they lost their jobs, didn’t have money to feed their children, down on their luck. These people we see as deserving kindness. For them to receive, it takes a certain type of humility, such as “swallowing pride.”
However, how do we receive kindness that we don’t have a tangible need for nor feel that it is a “deserved” earning? That takes a different level of humility and humbleness.
I thought about the Biblical story that tells of how Mary washed Jesus’ feet with expensive perfume. I realized that this story is about HOW to receive kindness. By letting her do what she needed to do for Him, Jesus provided an example in humility and humbleness. He didn't *need* it done, but she wanted to do it for Him. It didn't matter what anyone else thought about it, He accepted her kindness as it was given. He did not try to diminish it with "oh you shouldn't " or "I don't deserve this." He accepted it gracefully and humbly.
This acceptance of undeserved kindness shows us how important it is to not only learn to be kind to all, regardless of how we feel they deserve it, but also shows us the importance of accepting kindness.
The next time someone shows you kindness, do not dismiss it or try to brush it off. Accept it with a grateful heart and a humility that helps you better understand the kindness you offer.
Can we truly give kindness if we cannot receive?
I hope you have a lovely Sunday and rest of your week!