WHAT'S MORE ROMANTIC THAN KINDNESS?
"Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind." Henry James
Two years ago, I wrote a Wednesday Wisdom for Valentine's Day, in which I declared that my 42-year marriage with Marcie was a dream come true, and its success was based on three key principles:
1. I married someone with sterling character, who personifies the 1 Corinthians' Chapter 13 description of authentic Love.
2. We both do our best to live unselfishly, seeking the welfare of the other first.
3. We share the core belief that a loving, nourishing marriage has the capacity and the destiny to become eternal. Marcie and I believe our Heavenly Father honors faithful, devoted marriages and will perpetuate them beyond the grave.
Since then, I have come to the conclusion that there is a fourth essential factor that makes our marriage work, and work beautifully. I have observed other marriages of friends and family members who seemed to have it all together, but whose relationships fell apart because this one "little" ingredient was missing.
It sounds simple but it is profoundly impactful in our lives together:
4. We are kind to each other.
I believe that love and kindness go together, hand in hand. I fully agree with Randolph Ray, who said, "Kindness is tenderness. Kindness is love, but perhaps greater than love...Kindness is good will. Kindness says, 'I want you to be happy.'"
Kindness is the best way to show someone that they matter, whereas unkindness refutes and negates any and every other way you may try to express love. Flowers wilt, chocolates melt, and candlelight dinners give indigestion when paired with unkindness.
"Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver." Dr. Barbara De Angelis
The Apostle Paul definitely got it right when he wrote:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13: 4-6 (emphasis added).
This year, for the 44th Valentine's Day in a row, I will be striving to be kind to my forever sweetheart and companion, Marcie, and I will be basking in her kindness to me. I hope each of you will have the same blessing with your Valentine too.