Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness will find life and honor

(Proverbs 21.21 NRSV)

Mark Twain once wrote, "Kindness is a language that the deaf can hear and the blind can read."
He was right, of course.
Everyone can understand the language of love.
It can be spoken in any dialect and still be comprehended by a person of any nationality,
by the rich and the poor, by the old and the young, by both male and female.
Kindness is a universal language for it does not speak to the intellect, but directly to the heart.

Lord Jesus, guide me to speak the universal language of your kindness and love. Amen.
Ron Newhouse

You simply give to others a bit of yourself-
a thoughtful act,
a helpful idea,
a word of appreciation,
a lift over a rough spot,
a sense of understanding,
a timely suggestion.

You take something out of your mind,
garnished in kindness out of your heart,
and put it into another fellow's mind and heart.

Charles Burr

Dressed in Gentleness

Once in a while we meet a gentle person.
Gentleness is a virtue hard to find in a society that admires toughness and roughness.
We are encouraged to get things done and to get them done fast,
even when people get hurt in the process.
Success, accomplishment, and productivity count. But the cost is high.
There is no place for gentleness in such a milieu.

Gentle is the one who does "not break the crushed reed, or snuff the faltering wick"
(Matthew 12:20).
Gentle is the one who is attentive to the strengths and weaknesses of the other
and enjoys being together more than accomplishing something.
A gentle person treads lightly, listens carefully, looks tenderly, and touches with reverence.
A gentle person knows that true growth requires nurture, not force.
Let's dress ourselves with gentleness.
In our tough and often unbending world our gentleness can be a vivid reminder
of the presence of God among us.
Henri Nouwen

Not Breaking the Bruised Reeds

Some of us tend to do away with things that are slightly damaged.
Instead of repairing them we say:
"Well, I don't have time to fix it,
I might as well throw it in the garbage can and buy a new one."
Often we also treat people this way.
We say: "Well, he has a problem with drinking;
well, she is quite depressed;
well, they have mismanaged their business...
we'd better not take the risk of working with them."
When we dismiss people out of hand because of their apparent woundedness,
we stunt their lives by ignoring their gifts, which are often buried in their wounds.

We all are bruised reeds, whether our bruises are visible or not.
The compassionate life is the life in which we believe that
strength is hidden in weakness and that true community is a fellowship of the weak.
Henri J. M. Nouwen

Bruised Reeds and Smoldering Wicks

Look at a bruised reed at the water’s edge
— once slender, sturdy, and tall —
now bowed and bent.

Are you a bruised reed? 
You were upright and sturdy, rooted in the riverbed of confidence. 
Then you were bruised by harsh words, a friend’s anger,
a spouse’s betrayal, religion’s rigidity, or your own failure.

Is there anything closer to death than the smoldering wick on a candle? 
Once you blazed with faith. 
Then they said your ideas were foolish, your dreams were too lofty.

But the theme of the New Testament is that God is the friend
of the wounded heart
and the keeper of your dreams. 
Christ met people at all points of pain. 
By His touch bruised reeds straightened and smoldering wicks were ignited.

From: He Still Moves Stones
Max Lucado


1.  Take twenty minutes by yourself at the beginning of each day.

2.  Live above small troubles by losing yourself in big, worthwhile interests.

3.  Grow every day; life is a game; keep your eye on the ball,
rather than on the scoreboard.

4.  Have power to see things through;
keep remembering that most accomplishments
are three-fourths drudgery, and one-fourth joy.

5.  Alternate your interests.
It is better to be busy than bored.
Balance your life with work, play, love, and worship.

6.  Be gracious to others; do kind deeds beyond the call of duty;
remember that every person is fighting a battle.

7.  Talk over your problems with others- with confiding friends,
your doctor of medicine, your minister, your God.

8.  Work and co-operate with God,
praying that God will do something through you rather than for you.
 Thomas Kepler

Today I smiled, and all at once things didn't look so bad.
Today I shared with someone else, a bit of hope I had.
Today I sang a little song, and felt my heart grow light,
And walked a happy little mile, with not a cloud in sight.
Today I worked with what I had and longed for nothing more,
And what had seemed like only weeds, were flowers at my door.
Today I loved a little more and complained a little less,
And in the giving of myself,  I forgot my weariness.
Author Unknown

clipart by: www.cutecolors.com

Choose to love - rather than hate.
Choose to smile - rather than frown.
Choose to build - rather than destroy.
Choose to persevere - rather than quit.
Choose to praise - rather than gossip.
Choose to heal - rather than wound.
Choose to give - rather than grasp.
Choose to act - rather than delay.
Choose to forgive - rather than curse.
Choose to pray - rather than despair.
The Christophers

Happiness keeps You Sweet,
Trials keep You Strong,
Sorrows keep You Human,
Failures keep You Humble,
Success keeps You Glowing,
But Only God keeps You Going!