THURSDAY, JUNE 24
“Don’t be afraid,” David said to him, “for I will surely show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan. I will restore to you all the land that belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will always eat at my table.”
2 Samuel 9:7 (ESV)
THE LEADERSHIP OF A FATHER: KINDNESS
The institution of Father’s day is credited to a woman by the name of Sonora Smart Dodd. She wanted a special day to honor her father, Henry Jackson Smart. Her father was widowed when his wife died during the birth of their sixth child. Mr. Smart was left to raise the newborn and his other five children by himself on a rural farm in eastern Washington State.
As an adult, Sonora realized the sacrifice her father had shown in raising his children as a single parent. In the eyes of this daughter, he was a courageous, selfless, and loving man. In 1910, Sonora Smart Dodd started writing letters in support of a national Father’s Day observance. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson proposed that Father’s Day be proclaimed as a national day of observance. In 1956, Father’s Day was recognized by a Joint Resolution of Congress. In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the third Sunday of June as Father’s Day.
This past Sunday, we recognized our fathers and the men in our lives who have done their best to fulfill God’s plan for fatherhood. One of the characteristics we value in a father is “kindness.” In 2 Samuel 9:7 we saw that spiritual leaders care about people, even if they can’t return the favor. David showed kindness to Jonathan expecting nothing in return.
Much of what parents do for their children will never be reciprocated. The same is true of any great leader. They often care for others not expecting anything in return. What leader has been a good model of biblical kindness in your life?
God is the ultimate example of kindness. We could never repay Him for the kindness He offers us. Thank God for some of the ways He has shown you extreme kindness.