Drummond Still Speaks
A Christian classic ranked by many in the "top seven" apart from scripture itself is "The Greatest Thing in the World" by Henry Drummond (@1880). It is a presentation on Paul's chapter of love, First Corinthians Thirteen. Consider his remarks on "kindness":
Kindness. Love active. Have you ever noticed how much of Christ's life was spent in doing kind things--in merely doing kind things? Run over it with that in view and you will find that He spent a great proportion of His time simply in making people happy, in doing good turns to people. There is only one thing greater than happiness in the world, and that is holiness; and it is not in our keeping; but what God has put in our power is the happiness of those about us, and that is largely to be secured by our being kind to them.
"The greatest thing," says some one, "a man can do for his Heavenly Father is to be kind to some of His other children." I wonder why it is that we are not all kinder than we are? How much the world needs it. How easily it is done. How instantaneously it acts. How infallibly it is remembered. How superabundantly it pays itself back--for there is no debtor in the world so honourable, so superbly honourable, as Love. "Love never faileth". Love is success, Love is happiness, Love is life. "Love, I say, "with Browning, "is energy of Life."
"For life, with all it yields of joy and woe
And hope and fear,
Is just our chance o' the prize of learning love--
How love might be, hath been indeed, and is."
Where Love is, God is. He that dwelleth in Love dwelleth in God. God is love. Therefore love. Without distinction, without calculation, without procrastination, love. Lavish it upon the poor, where it is very easy; especially upon the rich, who often need it most; most of all upon our equals, where it is very difficult, and for whom perhaps we each do least of all. There is a difference between trying to please and giving pleasure Give pleasure. Lose no chance of giving pleasure. For that is the ceaseless and anonymous triumph of a truly loving spirit.
"I shall pass through this world but once. Any good thing therefore that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer it or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again."