We’ve heard of having the “best of intentions” and even “good intentions”, but there are also “kind intentions”.
I love Romans 2:4 that declares it’s the “kindness of God that leads to repentance”. His kindness changes hearts, directions, and intentions. How powerful an image. Not His wrath, His judgment, or His might, though these are real, it’s the overwhelming power of His kindness stemming from His love that hits the mark.
How often we can forget this, and jump too quickly away from it to other theological gymnastics in order to complicate His character.
Quite simply, God is good, and loves us. He truly is and does, and this is not just partitioned for some, but for all. It’s His kindness towards us that touches and transforms our hearts.
As such, we can begin to go out with “kind intentions”, and counter the hardness of life with goodness, and love.
If anyone is like me, I want only the good, and none of the bad. I want to live in a world where I am full of kindness and others overflow with it too. To live where there is no failure, death, damage, and/or rejection. I want perfection. And honestly, I expect perfection from myself and can almost demand it from others by the unrealistic expectations I can sometimes put on them.
But of course, that’s not living in reality – and I’m learning to appreciate reality so much more than I used to. When I consider it, reality is tangible, it’s concrete, and solid. Perfectionism is mythological, fantasy, and hollow.
My wife had a great way of explaining it one day – basically she illustrated how my desire to make and have things perfect is like trying to flatten out all the ups and downs, but like an EKG shows, as a heart beats, the graph bounces up and down – when it flatlines – there is death. Life is in the ups and downs.
Better yet, God says, He is with us even in the valleys. It’s simply a part of life’s reality, but not without His hope, His kindness, His goodness, and His love – which makes reality so much sweeter.
So, my desire is to step deeper and fuller into reality and less into fantasy. To get out of my head and enter more into my heart. To truly live with kind intentions, not as a disciple of judgment, or fear, but as a true disciple of kindness, welcoming, and love.
Not to be perfect, but grounded in the reality that brokenness and beauty exists simultaneously in all things and all people, and so grace, compassion, hope and mercy are needed.
This would be enjoying the best Jesus has to offer. But like everything else in realty, it’s always easier said than done – thankfully we don’t have to go it alone.