Is it possible to be kind and not be a pushover? By kind I mean, relating with others with respect and calmness even when confronted with wrongdoing or a mean attitude. By pushover, I mean not being easily swayed or influenced by someone in order to please or placate the person even if you disagree with him or her. In my experience of following Jesus as a disciple, reading the Bible and praying for the Holy Spirit, I believe it is possible to be kind and not be a pushover. How? I suggest three things.
- Be kind but firm. Follow Jesus’ lead. Be kind in speech and actions, but be firm with what you believe is right and true.
- Be kind but don’t tolerate evil. You can be kind but not condone or participate in wrongdoing.
- Be kind but not naive. The apostle Paul in Ephesians 5:16 warns us, “Be very careful, then how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”
Ever since I was a child, I enjoyed reading and writing. Perhaps it was because my parents were great storytellers and voracious readers. As soon as I learned to write (yes I did it in cursive like everybody else did then!) I started a diary. When I was nine years old I sent a letter to my Dad who was an overseas contract worker in Guam. I wrote it in a form of a comic book and illustrated it myself. As a student at the Central Philippine University Elementary School, I was the Filipino literary editor of our school paper, the Mini Echo. To this day I was baffled by that because I was not that good in Filipino! In highs school I served as literary editor in the Central High Herald. I began to write poems and short stories that unfortunately I don't have any copies saved because we didn't have computers and flash drives then. II joined a short story writing contest sponsored by Central echo, CPU's college paper some time in the 1980's. I joined because I needed money to buy a new pair of sandals. My short story was titled, "Leaves," and it won first place! The chief judge was Prof. Alfredo Q. Gonzales, author of the classic essay, "The Will of a River," one of my favorite reads of Filipino literature in English. I did a lot of writing in college/seminary and graduate school but the most fun I had was when I was writing poems and short stories. Fast forward to the 21st century, I now write sermons every week and articles for our monthly news letter. Currently I serve as Senior Pastor of Central Baptist Church of Woodbury in Woodbury, New Jersey, U.S.A. This is my twelfth year at CBC, where my husband and I served as co-interim pastors from 2010 through 2012. We have a 19-year old son who is a college freshman, and my technical adviser in all things digital. In this continuing writing adventure I am thankful to God for giving me the inspiration to write and the joy that goes with it. I hope that my poems, prayers and prose inspire joy in my readers.
View all posts by Carla Romarate-Knipel