Kindness

October 19, 2012

in Good Marriage, Series

The kindness tag is on 10% of my posts. You might think kindness is such an obvious requirement for a good marriage it would not need to be mentioned, or only mentioned rarely. Sadly, this is not the case, as anyone who ministers to marriages in any way knows all too well.

Kindness © Stephen Coburn | Dreamstime.com

You would expect a lack of kindness by the time a couple seeks help (or has help thrust upon them by concerned family and friends) but the cause and effect are not what you might think. A reduction in marital kindness usually precedes real problems, resulting in a loss of relationship, accelerating hard feelings and bad behaviour. Minor bad feelings reduce kindness, which makes the other spouse feel worse, which causes them to be less kind, and a vicious cycle is born.

  • Kindness usually begets kindness.
  • A lack of kindness and unkindness also tend to result in the same.
  • Kindness is usually most needed when it is most difficult to do.
  • Kindness can include what you say, how you say it, and what you choose not to say.
  • You lose nothing by being kind when you do not “have to be” kind.
  • If you start off unkindly, it is very difficult to back up to being kind.

Image Credit: © Stephen Coburn | Dreamstime.com

 

3 comments
marseille55
marseille55

I think that any discussion of kindness requires that we actually define what biblical kindness is versus temperamental kindness, The latter can still be done selfishly - to get gratitude, recognition or simply to keep things peaceful. Biblical kindness is, I believe, speech & actions that provide "what is helpful for building others up according to their needs" [Eph 4:29] As a result, it can be that admonishing my spouse is a kindness if it keeps them from perpetuating sinful and destructive behavior.

Jenny
Jenny

Marseille55 - thank you for sharing that. I had never really thought of it in those terms either. Although, I have noticed that building my husband up by focusing on the good, and praising the good, often changes behavior more than admonishing the bad, no matter how good my intentions. I think that's true for most people - it is for me as well! There are cases when the tough things must be said out of love for someone, though.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

marseille55 - Interesting. I am working with the biblical definition and never even thought about what you are saying.

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