Hoping to share the love, joy, and grace I have received in my own life.

A Second Lesson from the Chickens

on June 23, 2015

My experience with the chickens yesterday led me to share a second lesson that can be learned from them. Although boss hen was squawking horribly at the other four hens in the coop, in less than 20 seconds, her squawking ended and all five of the hens were not only  eating together, but the four others seemed to have forgiven the boss for her outburst.  Are chickens kinder or better at forgiveness  than we are?

Although it is easy for most of us to be kind to those that are kind to us, the Bible is clear that we should be kind to everyone. Our actions and our attitudes are most often a reflection of what our hearts truly feel.  Although kindness comes from the heart, we need to choose to put it into action.  A frequent prayer request of mine is for my attitude towards a person that has hurt me to be one of kindness.  As humans, it is our sinful nature to want revenge (or wish for “karma”) towards those that have been unkind to us.  Jesus’ sacrifice was for everyone, even those that hated and persecuted Him.  That is true kindness.

As Christians, we should be working to be like Jesus through this life. Truly it is not an easy task, but what would happen if we all chose kindness? I tell my daughters repeatedly, “You can only be responsible for your own actions. You cannot take blame for the actions of another person or how that person treats you, but you can control how you respond to those unkind people.”  Using excuses, such as, “I am not feeling well” or “I had a bad day” to treat others unkindly are just that…excuses. We all can be unkind, but should work each day towards being kinder more loving people.

After being on the end of negative words or actions from another person, just walking away may be the kind response.  I have been accused as being fake for not responding in an unkind way to a person that has hurt me. The truth is, it takes a bigger person to walk away and pray for the person that treated them unkind, rather than trying to hurt that person in response.  I have never had regret for being kind to another person, regardless of how they treated me. At the end of my life, my hope is that I will be remembered as a kind person.

We all have people in our lives that are there to be examples for us. They may show us how we should treat others, but some will show us how we should NOT treat others.  My Great Grandma, Mildred Thompson, was the greatest example of kindness in my life.  She is the only person I have known who had Jesus’ level of kindness. She was kind to everyone. She never talked badly about another person.  Her soft and loving way with everyone she came into contact with is still leading me towards the person I desire to be.

Sophocles said, “One who knows how to show and to accept kindness will be a friend better than any possession.”  I want to be that person. I work at it every day. I can see how the past few years have helped to shape me into a kinder, gentler, and more forgiving person. Kindness can be shared simply by smiling at a person, offering encouragement rather than criticism, and working to be kind to everyone, even those that are not kind to us.  My most recent response to people that have been unkind to me or my loved ones, is one of avoidance.  I am still  learning. I pray for them. When I can just walk away, I have no regret. If I respond without kindness or love, I feel as if I let myself down, let Jesus down, and let the other person down. 

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.  Colossians 3:12


One response to “A Second Lesson from the Chickens

  1. Sue Paulin says:

    You certainly have a way with words Dana… Thank you for sharing your heart!

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