Friday, May 4, 2012

Being Kind in a Mean World

I watched my sweet, beautiful, smart, oh so funny, girl have  her feelings trampled on last week by some kids who were just being flat out mean.

"You're to little to play with us."
"You're to slow to play with us."

As hard as it is to have that happen TO you, so much harder to watch your baby go through the deep waters of unkindness.

Hard not to run in and tell those older (not by much) kids what was what and they HAD JUST BETTER BACK OFF MY GIRL.

Not that there isn't a time and place for that, but this wasn't  that place.

No, this was the place for her to learn and grow, right  in the middle of mean.

Learn that:

Yes, there are mean people in this world.

Sometimes the people who are mean, call themselves your friend.

Sometimes, they might even call themselves a Christian.

When someone is mean to you and knocks you down, it does not define who you are and who you were created to be.

But, the best way to teach our kids about kindness, is to live it out ourselves.

It is hard to 'be nice' in a world that is mean. Harder still raise our kids in such a way that we don't allow the meanness of the world overtake them.
Because, they will drown if we aren't there to rescue them from the unkindness that attempts to overtake us all.

Hard not to be mean right back.

Hard not to fight when WE KNOW WE ARE RIGHT.

Sometimes, most times, 'being nice' or kind, is more important than being right.

Man, can I be really honest? That is such a struggle for me-especially in an election year.

The other day on Facebook I posted this Beth Moore quote: "There is power in kindness. It takes a supernatural power to stay kind in the mean world we're living in." 

A few hours later I was trying to make a 'quick' run into Wal Mart on the way to pick up the Princess from preschool.

When I got to the store there were not one, but two retirement community busses out front.

I sighed a very deep not nice sigh and took the time to post this to Twitter: When you pull up to Wal Mart and there are 2 retirement home shuttles out front your dream of a " quick trip" are dashed.

Two different people loving called me out.

And although I tried very hard not show unkindness on the outside while I was in the store, let me just say that inside I was not feeling very kind.

I've defiantly come to see (sadly on more that one occasion ) that my level of hurriedness affects (or can if I let it) my level of patience-which leads to kindness .
Let's face it you can't be kind to someone when you've lost your patience with them.

So, how we do we translate this back to our kids?  Because whether we like it or  not they are growing up in a world were self centered, unkindness is the norm and not the exception.

I'm sure there are books written about this by people wiser than me, but the best way I can think of is to live the thing out.

Let them see us being kind in a world where that isn't valued much.

Being kind when others aren't being kind to us.
Giving up our parking space to the guy in the parking lot that's being a jerk.
Letting the little old lady go in line in front of us-even when we're in a hurry (HELLO THAT WAS FOR ME)

Offering to help the lady with a crying baby instead of rolling our eyes at her.

Not getting irate at the fast food worker who's first langue isn't English so taking our order is a bit tricky.

Not always being 'right'.

And living by these words penned through Paul by the Holy Spirit so long ago, "And be kind to one another" Eph 4:32a

He didn't leave us any wiggle room did he? Not be kind if they are kind. 
Not be kind when it's convenient.


May kindness be our trademark,


Anonymous said...

I desperately needed to hear that.

Paige said...


Angie said...

Thanks to both of you-and I promise I needed to hear it more!

Texan In Kansas said...

Good words, my friend. I appreciate your transparency and the challenge it brings to my life.

Diane said...

YOU are one fabulous momma! You have no idea how many times I rushed in to "save" my kids - how much better it would have been to let them simply learn on their own, deal with it, and then simply move on because that's what kids do...they simply move on....wonderful post, my friend, wonderful post.

Jawanda said...

Self-inspection needed by me. Thanks for a great post, Angie. Compliments by bullying series this week. THanks for sharing!

Angie said...

Thanks all!

Jawanda, I've got to get over and check out your series!

Anonymous said...

Well said, my friend, well said! Thank you for sharing so honestly!
It's so very hard to be kind in a mean world...takes the strength and power of the Holy Spirit, to be sure! Oh, how times like this remind me over and over again of my need of a Savior!

Sarah said...

So good, Angie!

Angie said...

To be sure I never write from a place 'knowing all'. . .it's usually from tried and failed. :)

But, it seems more and more this is coming up in my life, the kids and all around me.
When did decided kindness was optional? So, I'll be working on this character trait in my own life so others see it in me!

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