Updated: Aug 31
Pastor J. Alfred Johnson II is a native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He currently serves as director of Adult Ministries (Sabbath School, Personal Ministries, and Prison Ministries) for the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists. Some years ago, he wrote a document called “The Kindness Crusade.” In his introduction he wrote:
To be "kind" means to be gentle, thoughtful, good-hearted and considerate in both our behaviour and deeds. And "crusade" means any vigorous or concerted movement for a cause. So in short, Kindness Crusade means an enthusiastic and deliberate effort to be kind to everyone we can whenever, wherever, and however we can!
The first verse he quoted was Romans 12:10 (NKJV) – Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly (and sisterly) love … in honour giving preference to one another.
Honour places high value on a person. Surely it is a gift to honour those around us – our family and friends, even strangers. They may never be honoured with a medal or the Nobel Peace Prize or an Academy Award. But, they have been honoured by God though the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the offer of eternal life. We are to love as Jesus loves. We are to love the same people Jesus loves. Honouring one another is a part of loving one another.
Together, Gary Smalley and John Trent wrote a book called, The Blessing. Referencing the story of Issac’s interaction with Jacob and Esau, the authors detail five blessing elements that can help us as Romans 12:10 encourages to Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly (and sisterly) love, in honour giving preference to one another.
I pray the Holy Spirit will speak to each of us as we hear these 5 elements of a Biblically based blessing:
1. Meaningful Touch
2. A Spoken Message
3. Attaching High Value
4. Picturing a Special Future
5. Making an Active Commitment
When the lawyer in Matthew 22:36 asked Jesus, “Which is the great commandment?” Jesus said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all our soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.”
Practising the 5 elements of a Biblically based blessing helps us as we learn to demonstrate the love we have for others.
Let's have a prayer together.
Father, You touch us in so many meaningful ways. Your Holy Spirit’s messages to us are filled with love and encouragement. Sending Your only begotten Son, Jesus, to earth has proven that You attach high value to us
Your Word pictures such a special future, and promises over and over that You have made an active commitment to us. Help us to bless others as You are blessing us. In Jesus’ precious and holy name I pray. Amen
May God bless you as you cherish the love you receive from Him and from those around you; as you love God with all that’s in you; and as you love your neighbour as yourself. Amen.