Choosing Kindness in 2021

Each year I choose a word to focus on and this year my word is kindness.

Side-note: Last year my word was surrender because I knew it would help me give up control-freak issues. After covid unexpectedly came along surrender might have subconsciously been anyone’s word. Spritually-speaking I had the opportunity to grow and it ended up being a valuable lesson to live by. I learned to surrender in many ways throughout 2020 and had sort of this give-it-to-God mindset to go along with my word of surrender.

Ok so back to this year, it’s been really cool to see how often I’ve physically seen the word ‘kindness‘ in my presence.

I sub at quite a few different schools and in a majority of the classrooms and hallways I’ve been met by my word. There are posters, paintings, and phrases of encouragement containing the word kindness, all serving as personal reminders to me.

Outside one of the school’s windows that faces the playground is painted ‘choose kindness’ and another one that reads ‘kindness matters’.

It’s interesting to me because those words have probably been plastered all over the schools for years but until kindness became my word (this year) I think it went unnoticed on my radar, so to be aware and take notice has been refreshing.

Kindness isn’t something I want to take for granted. When I see that word I don’t want it to be just a simple reminder of my 2021 word of the year rather I want it to speak deep into my being. I want it woven into my heart and felt within my thoughts and actions. I want it to push me to literally show kindness and recognize it when I see others living it out.

With it being March already I have a few months practice into my word.

Recently I was at the dentist with my oldest daughter who had a tiny cavity filled (her first and hopefully only one ever).

Something I really respected was that the hygienist laid her hand on top of Paige’s hands to comfort her as the dentist used the needle to numb her mouth; it may sound silly but that act of kindness just stuck out so much to me! It was noticeably-caring and that type of thing goes far in this wild world we live in.

From that experience I realized how important it is for me to not only be practicing and showing kindness myself but also to see it in others.

When the dentist reached out to us the next day to check on Paige (yes she does that because she’s amazing) you can bet I made mention of the hygienist’s act of kindness.

Another example of kindness came in the form of a compliment this past week…

I was teaching an elementary p.e. class when a little blonde haired boy complained of his knee hurting. I told him to have a seat against the wall for a bit and see if that might help.

Meanwhile as a crazy loud game of tunnel tag continued that little guy with the hurt knee had apparently traded phys-ed for art class. After a few minutes of resting he excitedly tapped me on the arm and pulled from his pocket the tiniest little notepad and pen and flipped through the busy pages until he came to the one he’d just completed. Amongst doodles it read ‘you are a really kind p.e. teacher.’

It was super sweet and heart-warming.

When I chose the word kindness for 2021 I didn’t know it was going to impact my life in such ordinary ways but that’s exactly what I would’ve hoped for.

In the 3rd through 5th grade Sunday school class I teach at church the curriculum we use has a focus word each month. February’s word happened to be kindness, the description they gave was this:

In our little class we’ve talked about being kinder than you have to be, being kind to those who are different than we are, and being kind to others because God is kind to us. I also told them to be sure and notice how much that word is displayed in their schools!

On the flip side my own kiddos are very aware that ‘kindness’ is my 2021 word so when they catch my irritation in something they quickly remind me to “remember your word mom….” The accountability in that makes such a difference!

Kindness encourages me in a huge way. It’s selfless. It’s a choice. And it truly does matter.

Do you choose a word for the year? If so what is your word and have you seen positive results from it?

If you have a story of recent kindness I’d love to hear about it in the comments.

pic from YouVersion app

Sweet blessings!

Author: alimw2013

About For His Purpose~ My name is Alicia and I'm a thirty-something year old who loves Jesus. Only through God’s amazing grace and mercy I have been redeemed from past regret and shame. Reading His word has allowed me to look past Satan’s forceful lies, to see myself for who Christ says I am in Him. Through writing I have learned why I made the choices I made in my younger years and I now have a better understanding of why I desire to love God like crazy these days. Despite my daily failures, God remains faithful always. I am reassured of His unconditional love for me by every ink-drop spilled out on paper, each committed prayer as I cry out to Him, and deep understanding reflected through reading His word as truth. Yes keeping a blog will make me vulnerable to others’ opinions- there will be some who don’t understand, some who may criticize or judge, but on the other hand if just one piece expressed through my writing grabs someone’s attention and directs them to God, then pouring out my heart in a blog for the world to read is worth it. I choose to glorify Him alone through words streaming across a glowing screen. And it wouldn’t be fair if I didn’t reveal the fact that I’m incredibly quirky; I’m my loving husband’s best friend, my vivacious kids’ craziest cheerleader and spiritual trainer (3 John 1:4). I love anything farmhouse and rustic style. I think cupping a warm coffee mug in the palm of my hands is more satisfying than the contents within. I share a common obsession with my husband for the mountains, but I would (without a doubt) settle for waves crashing against my legs at the Atlantic Ocean just as well, and I almost always have a Yorkie curled up on my lap while writing. *All photos are photographed by and therefore may not be stored or photocopied in any manner.

28 thoughts on “Choosing Kindness in 2021”

    1. Ya I keep thinking that too actually…and I’ve also thought ‘wow if people would ambitiously spread the word of Jesus in the way the news of covid has spread boy our call to spread the gospel would be met and we’d be hanging out with Jesus in Heaven!! (Matthew 24:14)

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I have another word that is not as strong. That word is civility. I feel we’re so broken that for many Americans “kindness” is out of reach. And to me kindness is reserved for people we’re familiar with. I fear we’re only talking about aspirations; in families, schools, churches, and communities.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Funny how a simple act of kindness can turn around a bad day. A couple days ago at the doctor’s office, my car decided not to start – just as the office was closing. Nevertheless, the receptionist let me back in and helped me find someone to jumpstart my car, even though it was time for her to get home. Thank God for such people!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I love this, Alicia. I love the posters, the stories, the thoughtfulness behind the varieties of kindness you taught to your Sunday School class. The phrase that sticks out to me is “be kinder than you have to be!”
    My word for the year is “grace”. I want to show grace to others when they need it, and I want to show grace to myself when I need it. I also want to focus on God’s grace bestowed upon us/me, and I am intentionally studying it in the Bible this year.
    Thank you so much for this post. It was memorable. I’m going to be kind and notice kindness this week (at least!).

    Liked by 2 people

    1. ❤️grace is one of my favorite words. It helps me remember we are human and we’re imperfect, one of my strongest spiritual gifts is mercy and I feel like wherever mercy is grace better be right there too! I love that you are studying the word “grace” this year, what a great idea!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah, G. R. A. C. E.! “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” We all need it!
        I love how you chose one of the fruits of the Spirit for your word of the year. And how showing kindness doesn’t have to be a huge effort, just recognizing the opportunities. For teachers, especially, kindness is something those kids will remember for a lifetime. I am 68, and I still remember teachers who were kind, and random moments when I experienced their kindness. ❤

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I’ve actually never seen grace in the form of an acronym like that, I like it!! Thanks for sharing!
        And ya kindness can go such along way!! I’m thankful it’s one of the fruits of the spirit, and we see Jesus model it often in His ministry!


  4. That poster you saw was on target. Kindness is a choice. I struggle with my health daily, and most of the time I find my tolerance for others lacks from my healthier days. Heck, I get mad at can openers. There is that quick moment when His Spirit offers me a choice to override my personal flesh and display kindness instead. It really is a choice.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ya I completely understand! I’m impatient and easily frustrated (my amazing dad, bless his heart, was the same so it’s in my blood) BUT because of Jesus blood I can choose to recognize and accept the perfect love and kindness shown there. It pushes me to want to choose better in my shortcomings!
      Thanks for reading Alan!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. What a beautiful post… Some time ago, a friend gave me a beautiful gift, a pickle board with these words on them: “You never regret being kind” … This gift now hangs in my kitchen. It’s a vivid reminder to me, to make an effort to see others through a lens of good intentions … something which takes a lot of practice. Thank you for this beautiful reminder, Alicia. It was timely for me.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. What a lovely post, Alicia. I love how it’s a reminder to not just be kind to others, but also notice kindness in others and to thank them. noticing and saying thank you to God for what He is doing is something God is working on in me. The children reminding you makes me smile – my youngest son would always use my vows of this nature to his own advantage! 😀

    Liked by 3 people

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