“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” Colossians 3:12
A few weeks ago I saw a poster that said, “Be somebody’s umbrella.” The meaning didn’t hit me until hours later and it has stuck with me since. It did not mean to literally protect someone from the rain, but rather to be someone’s metaphorical sunshine. Compassion. Kindness. So easily overlooked and so often undervalued.
In a world that is being constantly taken over by technology, AP exams, piano practice, college applications, basketball games, NHS volunteer hours, and so on – we forget to simply show compassion and kindness to our friends, to our families, and to our strangers.
Even with so much going on, we have a duty as Christians to give kindness and compassion (among other things) to the people that surround us. Colossians 3:12 says, “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” These expectations that God has for us are not unattainable - the five mentioned in this verse are manners we’ve been taught since childhood! But I think God is asking us to go beyond what we learned in our Kindergarten Sunday School lessons and really make the world a better place.
So, how do we do it? Kid President (who is a 12-year-old who makes awesome and inspirational videos on how to make the world a better place) once said this – “It’s everybody’s duty to give the world a reason to dance!” Now, think about it. When someone is kind, compassionate, gentle, humble, and passionate toward you, doesn’t it make you want to boogie? Because I know it does for me! Even one kind gesture causes a chain reaction, or in our case, a dance marathon!
Another guideline from Kid President is this: “If it doesn’t make the world better… don’t do it.” We should make a goal every day to better the little world around us. Colossians 3:12 encourages us to do so by being kind and gentle. We do this by focusing on others rather than focusing on ourselves. It’s like that age-old quote from Bambi, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.” Let’s just all steer clear of things that aren’t turning this place into a joyful dance party!
Remind yourself constantly – Put on your “pants” of compassion and kindness. It’s your duty to give the world a reason to dance. And if it doesn’t make the world better, just don’t do it. Every single day, make a goal to make someone’s life a little brighter.
Be an umbrella to someone who is having a rainy day. I promise you that there is no greater feeling than making a friend (or stranger’s) world a better place to be. I’ll close with scripture from Ephesians: “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”