Be Kind Not Quarrelsome (2 Tim 2:24)

Be Kind Not Quarrelsome (2 Tim 2:24)

I read this blog entry by Jerry Jenkins and thought it was a great reminder to all of us about the call of Scripture for how we, as Christ-followers, are to respond to and treat others.  I see this often in our Harvest congregation and share this as encouragement for us all.


Kinder Than Kind

I once saw the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer — in front of a large crowd — take a lengthy question from a fan with cerebral palsy. Dr. Schaeffer closed his eyes in concentration as the question went on and on and on. I understood maybe a fourth of the words.

Dr. Schaeffer made sure he understood every syllable before answering. It struck me that he had been kinder than the incident called for. He could have asked someone else to interpret. He could have asked to speak to the young man later. But everything he had expounded in his book and film, How Shall We Then Live? was tested by this seemingly insignificant incident.

He had been kinder than kind.

Several years ago at a writers conference, my wife and I were in the cafeteria, eating with a local pastor and his wife, when a woman with cerebral palsy was wheeled to the table and her tray of food set before her. The pastor greeted the woman as if her joining us was the highlight of his day. He introduced her all around and joked with her. Somehow it emerged that they had met just two days before.

The rest of us sat there trying to avoid embarrassing her, averting our eyes as she pushed the food around on her plate, spilled most of it on its way to her mouth, and left most of that on her face. But her new friend, the pastor, took it in stride.

He didn’t look away. Without fanfare he casually put his own spoon at the edge of her plate so she could scoop her mashed potatoes without losing them. He looked at her when he talked to her, and when too much food accumulated on her face, he casually wiped it away with his own napkin.

He would have been kind to have simply included her, talked to her, and treated her as a peer. But he had nurtured her, protected her, helped her without making a show of it.

He had been kinder than kind.

Another time I watched as Rosey Grier, the massive former pro football player who became a minister, met a young boy with Down syndrome. The child and his mother hoped for a handshake and an autograph. Instead the big man dropped to one knee, putting him at eye level with the boy.

Rosey put his arm around him, pulled him close, and asked if he could pray with him.

The boy’s mother wept. When she tried to thank Rosey, he simply winked at her and whispered to the boy, “You take care of your Mama now, you hear?”

Oh, that we might all be caught being kinder than kind.