Friday, October 20, 2006

the law of Kindness

I should have gotten a ticket for running a red light the other day, but the kind police man had mercy on me.
Even though the light was quite red when I entered the intersection, he understood that I couldn't see it because of the semi directly in front of me.
The officer did point out that it was my responsibility as a motorist to make sure I could see the traffic light before entering the intersection. I may have acted in ignorance, but my actions put others in danger, he reminded me.
But he extended grace and my 50-year-long record of never getting a traffic ticket still stands.
When I got home after that, I did some Bible reading. I've been thinking a lot about kindness lately and was trying to find a verse about the "milk of human kindness." I discovered that this phrase isn't from the Bible at all but is from Shakespeare's Hamlet. But I did discover a very lovely verse about kindness:
Proverbs 31:26--"She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness."
As I sat there wondering just how the "law of kindness" works, I remembered my recent infraction.
I had broken the law. I deserved a ticket, but I received grace. The officer gave me instructions to help me avoid this situation in the future and sent me on my way.
And his act of kindness in letting me off the hook has made me a much more observant (and hopefully better) driver these past few days!
A weak illustration perhaps, but it helped me wrap my mind around what that little phrase means. I was also reminded of another amazing verse: " . . . the kindness of God leads you to repentance." Romans 2:4.
Which reminds me of a story that I shall tell another day . . .