Arts and culture Love and grace People

Choosing kindness, choosing character


Reflection: Over the last little while, our world has seen many things come its way, from a global pandemic to the recent death of George Floyd and the on flow of political protests.

It has got me on a roller coaster of emotions, hurting for those in the US, but also hurting for those who haven’t been heard yet.

It has got me asking, what’s next for 2020? What’s next for humanity?

They say bad things come in threes. Now I’m not the superstitious type of person, nonetheless, I often find myself holding my breath in anticipation for what is going to hit us next.

We are six months into 2020, and here’s hoping that the next six are better than the first.


However, amidst all that has been going on there’s a few things that I have been challenged by.

Amidst the most recent Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, I found myself watching the news, hearing from family I have in the states and trying my best to learn and to understand systemic racism.

Now as a woman of colour myself, it was not something that I turned a blind eye to. It’s something that I have been aware of long before any of the recent actions. However, the recent events had me reflecting on it and other issues that are plaguing society today.

The core

Upon reflection I was reminded again of God’s ultimate commandment to us – Love Him and Love people. It reminded me of the things that I say and do and got me asking whether those reflected God’s love.

Racism or inequality aside, at its core, the issue still asks if we are saying and doing that which shows God’s love? Because when we don’t, we make room for the words of racism, and the actions of inequality.

During this time, I came across a quote by Lao Tzu:

Watch your thoughts, they become your words,

Watch your words, they become your actions;

Watch your actions, they become your habits;

Watch your habits, they become your character;

Watch your character, it becomes your destiny.

This quote got me asking whether I was speaking words of life and kindness to those around me, or whether in the name of ‘humorous sarcasm’ I was actually failing to be kind.

How has this shaped my actions? What habits has this created? What does my character look like to a stranger because of this? What path is this taking me down?

This opened a convicting door which has caused me to be more cautious of the things that I think and especially the things that I speak over people.

Isn’t it a funny thought that so many problems could be resolved if we collectively chose to speak kindness and love. What we speak can have the power to honour or dishonour God. We can choose to love, or choose to hate.

So among all the things going on in the world today, be sure to choose kindness in your thoughts, words and actions. As the choices you make, affect how you shape your character.

Part of what we can do amidst what is going on today, is simply to show love and kindness through the power of our words and actions.

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More information:

Araina Kazia Pereira is based in Auckland, New Zealand. She is a published writer having written for various outlets and has recently become a Press Service International young writer.

She enjoys asking the big questions and writing about the challenging questions that she has wrestled with in her own journey, as well as her learnings along the way. You can contact her at [email protected]


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