Showing Kindness

And when they were escaped, then they knew that the island was called Melita.  And the barbarous people shewed us no little kindness: for they kindled a fire, and received us every one, because of the present rain, and because of the cold.

So when this was done, others also, which had diseases in the island, came, and were healed…

Acts 28:1-2, 9

After being shipwrecked in the great storm, the passengers and crew of Paul’s ship found themselves cast away on the island of Melita.  On the island, they found a barbarous people.  Normally, I would probably be a little nervous if I was shipwrecked on an island and found it inhabited by barbarians.  But these “barbarous people” we not like that.  They were kind.  In fact Paul says that they “shewed us no little kindness.”  They were very kind.  They were generous and they were helpful to these shipwrecked people.  They “received us every one” after having made a fire to warm them.

These people showed simple kindness to others and were richly repaid for it.  In verse 9, we find Paul returning their kindness: “…others also, which had diseases in the island, came, and were healed…”  Paul healed all of the people who came with diseases.  Being healed of an otherwise incurable disease is a handsome reward for showing simple kindness to strangers and making them a fire.

Think of the great blessing these people would have missed had they not showed this kindness.  If they had treated these shipwreck survivors as enemies or trespassers, they would never have seen these miracles and would never have experienced this healing.

All of these things happened because some “barbarous people” showed kindness to others.  We should be always looking for ways to show kindness to others and we should always be looking for ways to repay kindness done to us.  It is simply a matter of Biblical sowing and reaping!

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