“Minnesota nice” is a phrase we like to use around our area to refer to the good encounters that we have with people from our state. People feel good when we smile and greet one another and genuinely show care and concern for one another.
However, sometimes that Minnesota “nice” can turn into Minnesota “nasty”. As one friend of mine said recently, why does it seem that sometimes people from around here seem so nice to your face and when you turn your back to walk away that is when the gossip and the nasty comments begin?
This is a point worth reflecting on for each of us in our area. How do I speak and act to those that I am with? And how do I speak and act toward those that are not in my presence? If we profess Jesus as Lord then we should find ourselves being consistent in our speech and conduct with the way He spoke and acted.
During this Advent season leading up to the birth of Our Savior Jesus Christ, we should find ourselves practicing Minnesota “kindness”. That is, we should seek out opportunities to genuinely serve those around us in love and offer words of encouragement without seeking repayment.
A generous heart is a kind heart. A deceitful heart is a nasty heart.
The heart of Mary for women is an example of kindness and generosity as she says “yes” to the plan of God the Father and fulfills what the prophet Isaiah foretold, “Therefore, the Lord himself will give you this sign, the virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall name him Emmanuel (Isaiah 7:14).”
The heart of Joseph for men is an example of faithfulness and obedience. Joseph receives the message of an angel in faith as he is told, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her (Matthew 1:20).”
What is going on in your heart during this Advent season? Is there a need for new life, healing, forgiveness, love or peace in your life?
As we draw near to the Lord during this sacred season let your love for Jesus be revealed in your kindness to all that you meet!