“Treat one another justly. Love your neighbors. Be compassionate with each other.” (Zechariah 7:9, The Message).
There is a single phrase that helps me tremendously in every inter-personal relationship I encounter each day. “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle.” (Philo of Alexandria, Jewish philosopher).
You may not realize it but a great war is being waged all around you today. The enemy has an arsenal replete with smart bombs, booby-traps, drones, land mines, and assorted missiles. And every person you meet is carefully battling their way through peril.
This is true of every person you meet, just as it is true of you. It is one of the paramount reasons the Lord has joined us inseparably to one another, for there is power in our fellowship – a supply that helps us face and fight through any and every battle. "Two are better than one," Solomon wrote, "for if the one falls down, the other is there to help"(Eccl.4:10, The Message).
Henry Ward Beecher, while walking down a street, passed a newsboy shivering in the cold. Being moved with compassion toward him, the great preacher bought up all his newspapers, and when he handed over the money to him, he said, “Surely you are cold?”
“I was,” replied the lad with a gulp, “till you passed, sir.”
Have you warmed anybody up lately? Everybody you meet is fighting a great battle – and too often they are left to struggle alone. This too often leads to conflict with others that escalates into unnecessary and unseemly behavior.Beginning today, and continuing for the next few days, I want to show you how to win without being wicked.
It starts with kindness.