Be Nice (by D.A. Cobb)

I saw a wonderful bumper sticker the other day. It read, “be nice.” What a simple, pleasant and gentle message. This world needs more reminders like this to understand our softer and kinder side.

Whenever I hear a person say “nice” I think of words like pleasing, agreeable and patient. What about “I had a nice evening” or “she’s a nice person?” I recall playing basketball in high school and my teammates calling out “nice shot” or reprimanding my youthful children by telling them, “That’s not a nice thing to say.”

Did you know there is no such word as “nice” in the Bible? Don’t ask me why as I am neither a Hebrew nor a Greek scholar. Maybe the word is too modern. While the exact word may be absent in many English translations, the concept is definitely present.

This definition describes many men and women found in the book of Books, but none more so than Jesus Himself.

Witness His gentleness with children, His compassion as He cured the diseased and the love expressed to all who listened. His teachings showed tenderness, His instructions were heartfelt and His voice spoke with assurance and hope. He was truly God on earth and an example to all.

Read a portion of the personal letter Paul writes to Timothy,

“But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me,

the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience

as an example for those who would believe on him

and receive eternal life.”

1Timothy 1:16

What would your reaction be if you met someone like Him today? It would most likely be a mix of skepticism and mistrust of both the man and his mission. You might even see him as evil or at best insincere. What a sad commentary regarding the times in which we live. But there is reason to rejoice!

We can rejoice knowing He walks among us with His promise of hope, love and encouragement. He did so with the Twelve as testimony to His divine placement and eternal message.

“This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you:

God is light; in him there is no darkness at all”

1 John 1:5


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