When I went to register a domain name for this blog, I was happy to find that no one had taken godiskind.com. In fact, no one had taken godiskind.org, or godiskind.net, or godiskind.biz, godiskind.info, godiskind.us or godiskind.anything-else. That seemed odd to me. And sad. Godiskind isn’t a very long or complex name for a web site. On a whim, I searched for godismad, and found that godismad.com, godismad.org, godismad.net were all registered. If domain name registrations reveal the pulse of the culture, the prevailing cyber-view of God is not so good.
I shouldn’t be too surprised. Probably the most surprising aspect of God is his kindness. If there is a supreme being, a creator of the universe, we rather expect that he would be powerful and all-knowing, and… why do we assume he would be on the mean side? Because the universe is on the mean side? It’s true. Living outside the protection of a community and our man made environments (houses) is called “roughing it” and it can be pretty rough. The elements are often severe.
But surely there is a gentle side to creation. The whisper of a breeze, the babble of a brook, the scamper of a chipmunk, the delicacy and fragrance of a flower – all evidence of a character that is not always harsh. There must be two sides to the creator.
Genesis says we are made in the image of God. Amongst the rabunctious energy of a young child can be found the tenderest of emotions – a tiny kiss, a snuggle, a sleepy hug. Are these glimpses of a side of God we often miss? And one we often leave behind when we “mature?”
God is kind. That word is found a few places in the Scriptures. I’ve listed a few of them below. The word doesn’t seem very important. It’s not an abstract or profound theological concept, like righteousness or longsuffering, and it doesn’t carry, for most of us, the great meaning of a simple word like love, nor the mystery of a word like eternal.
No, kindness is a humble word. The Bible dictionaries say it just means simple things like good, gentle, easy, useful… gracious. One dictionary says the word was so humble that it was rarely used in speaking of a god or a king. Gods and kings don’t bend down from their exalted positions to lend a hand, or give a gentle touch, or whisper some encouraging words – to show kindness. No, they usually don’t do that.
With one exception. The God who is called love. The God who lowered himself as far as could be imagined and allowed himself to be abused. The God who was silent before his slaughterers. Could this self sacrificing, redeeming God also be found touching and whispering? Is the omnipotent universe creator actually gentle?
Yes, I am sure he is. For no other image of God has so deeply touched my heart. Nothing has surprised me more about this one. God is kind. Somehow, the almighty is humble. He loves his enemies.
He loved me.
But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. (Luke 6:35)
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. (1st Corinthians 13:4)
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness… (Galatians 5:22)
… so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:7)
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32)
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience… (Colossians 3:12)