The holiday season is a wonderful time of the year because it provides many opportunities to be with family and friends. The holidays can also be a time of added stress at work and home as families are spending more time together than normal while trying to balance all the usual responsibilities of work and life. As we prepare for Thanksgiving, it is important to remember that this time of the year is a great opportunity to demonstrate the kindness of God to our family, friends, and coworkers.
We are in the middle of a series on the application of the fruit of the Spirit in the workplace, and this installment focuses on the attribute of kindness. In Galatians 5:22, the Apostle Paul writes, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness…” (ESV) As with each of the nine characteristics of the fruit of the Spirit, kindness is a result of the Spirit’s work in our lives. Kindness will increasingly manifest in our relationships at work and home as we continue to surrender to the will of the Spirit.
The Greatest Kindness
Thanksgiving is a great time to reflect on God’s blessings in our lives. One of his greatest blessings is the kindness he has demonstrated to us through Jesus Christ. When we recall the Roman Road, we are reminded that we are sinners (Rom. 3:23). We were sold to our sin, and the just punishment for our sin is death (Rom. 6:23). Yet, out of his lovingkindness towards us, God the Father offers God the Son to be our propitiation.
The Apostle Paul states we have an assurance of our salvation when we confess Christ as Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised him from the dead (Rom. 10:9). The holiness of God demands a just payment for our sin, but the kindness of God towards us provides a path of redemption through Christ alone. We must never forget we have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving season.
As Christians, we can be kind to others because God was first kind to us. When dealing with difficult coworkers, it is not always easy to be kind. Through the Spirit’s power, we receive the capacity to be kind even when our flesh would wish for us to choose otherwise. A characteristic of the fruit of the Spirit is kindness, and we have the privilege to demonstrate this kindness to our coworkers as we invite the Spirit’s presence into our workplaces.
The Gift of Prayer
There are many ways to demonstrate the kindness of the Spirit to our coworkers, but here are three practical suggestions. First, let’s pray for our coworkers. Prayer is a powerful tool, and one of the kindest things we can do for people is pray for them. We can pray for their salvation, pray for their families, and ask the Lord to bless them. As we pray, we should not be surprised if the Lord gives us a great burden for the spiritual wellbeing of those for whom we are praying.
The Gift of Your Testimony
Second, we need to share our testimony. One of the kindest things we can do for people is share what Jesus has done for us. We live in a world filled with sorrow and depression, and many workplaces also exhibit these characteristics. Sharing our testimony is an opportunity to let our coworkers know there is hope.
During this Thanksgiving season, we can reflect on all the blessings God has provided us, and sharing our testimony provides a glimmer of hope to our coworkers that there is an abundant life available through Jesus Christ. Obviously, we must use discernment to know when and how to share our testimony. Most people work in secular environments, so we must be wise. At the same time, we can be wise and creative in seeking opportunities to share the hope of Christ through our testimonies.
The Gift of Fellowship
This leads us to our third act of kindness: let’s invite a coworker to our family’s Thanksgiving meal. Thanksgiving is a lifestyle, and the Thanksgiving holiday provides us with a wonderful opportunity to invite coworkers to experience the love of God through community. We may have coworkers who are away from their families and inviting them to a Thanksgiving meal could open the door for sharing our testimony and for gospel conversations.
As we prepare to invite people to a Thanksgiving meal, let’s not forget to pray. Let’s ask the Lord to draw our coworkers unto himself as we demonstrate the kindness of the Spirit to them. We can be kind because God was first kind to us, and for this we should be thankful.