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When Did We Become So Mean?

In a recent conversation, my teacher-friend mentioned how the school system has recognized the need to teach kindness to the kids. Over the years, it’s been forgotten and kids are not as kind. They make fun of others. Tear down. Have exclusive clubs. And the such.

Kindness? Really? It’s not something that they already know?  After reflection, I realized…you know what? They’re right! They know what it means but fall dreadfully short when it comes to living it out.

Shows like Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood have been replaced with Fairly Odd Parents and the like. This generation has grown up watching intolerance, injustice, and acts of hatred left and right. They’ve seen us let fear take hold….and watched as we fret at night. But kindness…have they seen it modeled? Do they recognize it as a need right now?

  • Do the words we speak lift others up…or rather tear them down?
  • Do we put others in front of ourselves…or does selfishness abound?
  • Will we spread joy this holiday season…or grumble as we wait in the crowd?
  • Do we gossip, complain, whine, and moan…or do we spread good cheer?
  • Have we forgotten the meaning of respect to those in public service? Our teachers, policemen, firemen, and others who give their lives to better us.
  • Do we have a me-first attitude? Or do we remember the words of Jesus…”It is more blessed to give than receive” (Acts 20:35).

As parents of the generation-rising, we have a responsibility. It is our job to instill an attitude of gratefulness and stop passing the buck around. If we want a world where kindness looms, then we need to reflect within. What do we show with our own lives? Would others say that we’re kind?

 

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12 Replies on

When Did We Become So Mean?

  • Thank Heavens, my daughter and my grandson and my brothers say to me that I am a kind person. And I know that about myself because I love people. And I know what it is like to be surrounded by unkind people. And it seems to be so true that people have become so mean. In the market the other day a cashier asked a man how his day was going and the poor guy began telling her how other people hated him and how he wished he could just rid the world of certain people, etc. He was still talking (louder now) as I was leaving the store. He sounded like the mean one! It was very surprising and eye-opening. I just choose to treat others as I would like to be treated, it helps make Life a lot less stressful.

  • I have said this many times. I’ve even blogged about it. I’m grateful that I have taught my son this and he, at 19, models kindness to all. He’s even pulled the kindness card on me a time or two when I let frustration, rather than understanding guide me. My general practice is kindness first; because it may change a person’s mindset in an instant. As a “band mom” while my son was in high school, I was told by many of the students that I was a favored mom due to my unfailing kindness, even when they were having a bad day. And some days, I was the only hug a kid got or kind word. That’s the legacy I want to leave and I hope that even if they don’t remember my name, they remember what I gave them in their hearts.

  • I live in an area of the country that is hostile to Christianity. I’m often stunned at what people here freely say without any consideration that someone may disagree with their hostile comments. Sometimes I want to respond, but not sure, when emotionally upset, how to respond with kindness, so I just shut down.

    1. Dawn, I will be praying for you! It is so hard to table our emotions and love people unconditionally. I often have to remind myself of Jesus words, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). Loving others is not easy. It teaches us to look at the cross and remind ourselves of the love of Jesus. Because He loves us and laid down His life for us…we can freely love others too.

      So…what does that look like? I tell myself I don’t have to believe the same things to love someone. I don’t have to look like someone else to love them well. I can respectfully listen and dig deep to see how they’ve been hurt and wronged. And I can love them the best that I know how.

      1. The problem becomes we are to love unconditionally but the church doesn’t teach you the rest of the story, we are not to mix the Spirit of God dwelling within us to the spirits of other gods.   We are to remain silent work hard and if someone wants to hear the good news of one God who dwells within us then we tell them.   We are not here to save the whole world but to those that God sends to us. It says in the Word let the dead bury the dead, the churches are good at being dead in the Spirit of Christ.

  • I live in an area of the country that is hostile to Christianity. I’m often stunned at what people here freely say without any consideration that someone may disagree with their hostile comments. Sometimes I want to respond, but not sure, when emotionally upset, how to respond with kindness, so I just shut down.

    1. Dawn, I will be praying for you! It is so hard to table our emotions and love people unconditionally. I often have to remind myself of Jesus words, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). Loving others is not easy. It teaches us to look at the cross and remind ourselves of the love of Jesus. Because He loves us and laid down His life for us…we can freely love others too.

      So…what does that look like? I tell myself I don’t have to believe the same things to love someone. I don’t have to look like someone else to love them well. I can respectfully listen and dig deep to see how they’ve been hurt and wronged. And I can love them the best that I know how.

      1. The problem becomes we are to love unconditionally but the church doesn’t teach you the rest of the story, we are not to mix the Spirit of God dwelling within us to the spirits of other gods.  We are to remain silent work hard and if someone wants to hear the good news of one God who dwells within us then we tell them.  We are not here to save the whole world but to those that God sends to us. It says in the Word let the dead bury the dead, the churches are good at being dead in the Spirit of Christ.

  • When the altars failed America 40 yrs ago and decided to go with the norm of society to keep membership. When they took prayer out of school in 63 then the abortion kicked in.

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