Elianah Habitan, Little Whispers

An Equation of Kindness

 

First Reading
Colossians 3:12-17

Brothers and sisters:
Put on, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved,
heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience,
bearing with one another and forgiving one another,
if one has a grievance against another;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do.
And over all these put on love,
that is, the bond of perfection.
And let the peace of Christ control your hearts,
the peace into which you were also called in one Body.
And be thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,
as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another,
singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs
with gratitude in your hearts to God.
And whatever you do, in word or in deed,
do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 150:1B-2, 3-4, 5-6
R.(6) Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!

Praise the LORD in his sanctuary,
praise him in the firmament of his strength.
Praise him for his mighty deeds,
praise him for his sovereign majesty.
R. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise him with the blast of the trumpet,
praise him with lyre and harp,
Praise him with timbrel and dance,
praise him with strings and pipe.
R. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise him with sounding cymbals,
praise him with clanging cymbals.
Let everything that has breath
praise the LORD! Alleluia.
R. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!

Gospel
Luke 6:27-38

Jesus said to his disciples:
“To you who hear I say, love your enemies,
do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you,
pray for those who mistreat you.
To the person who strikes you on one cheek,
offer the other one as well,
and from the person who takes your cloak,
do not withhold even your tunic.
Give to everyone who asks of you,
and from the one who takes what is yours do not demand it back.
Do to others as you would have them do to you.
For if you love those who love you,
what credit is that to you?
Even sinners love those who love them.
And if you do good to those who do good to you,
what credit is that to you?
Even sinners do the same.
If you lend money to those from whom you expect repayment,
what credit is that to you?
Even sinners lend to sinners,
and get back the same amount.
But rather, love your enemies and do good to them,
and lend expecting nothing back;
then your reward will be great
and you will be children of the Most High,
for he himself is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked.
Be merciful, just as also your Father is merciful.

“Stop judging and you will not be judged.
Stop condemning and you will not be condemned.
Forgive and you will be forgiven.
Give and gifts will be given to you;
a good measure, packed together, shaken down, and overflowing,
will be poured into your lap.
For the measure with which you measure
will in return be measured out to you.”


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“And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus,…” (Colossians 3: 17)

REFLECTION
Growing up, I was told that to be a good kid in the His eyes, I must always be kind to others. I never had a problem with it at the start. Perhaps, it is due to being raised up in a community wherein everyone exercised it. As a result, I blindly followed an equation I deemed was universal:

kindness ⇌ kindness

Instead of simply incorporating benevolence in my actions, I embedded in them the hopes of having them reciprocated. I looked at kindness as if it were a series of transactions. I give them something good, they pay it back with something good as well. Though flawed, the equation made me feel like I was achieving my goal of being a good kid and a servant of the Lord.

It was a shock when I learned that not all share the same values. It happened when I began to explore outside of my community. I started going to a school where all opinions mattered and moral beliefs diverged. As a sheltered kid, I didn’t understand how some people were ignoring my attempts at being nice. Rather than receiving gratitude, I was left with none at all. It shattered
my perception. It became even more disheartening when I realized that I wasn’t able to be who Jesus wanted me to become.

And so, I got tired, stopped trying, and shied away from initiating goodwill to those who didn’t care.

Funny enough, after being in the student council, I learned that kindness wasn’t about exchanging, it was about sharing. All along it was:

kindness → endless possibilities

God has invested plenty of love within us that we are bound to share them around. He wanted us to feel loved, but more importantly, He wanted us to be like Him – willing to give love ceaselessly. Let us not be discouraged that when we offer and sacrifice ourselves to others, we would lose so much. Because, as we do something wholesome, pure and full of passion to serve Him and His children, we step closer in fulfilling His plan: a world full of love and compassion.

Reflection Song

More Like Jesus by Passion ft. Kristian Stanfill

Author

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Photo by: Antoine Dautry (@antoine1003 at unsplash.com)