“And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted…” (Ephesians 4:32).
Pastor Kenward stood before the men in the classroom and was answering questions at the Baptist Bible Institute of Cleveland, Ohio. These future pastors were very eager to ask practical questions about the pastoral ministry. One question focused on where he did most of his counseling. Dr. Kenward responded, “For the first several years I counted counseling everywhere I traveled. I totaled up nearly 1,000 counseling situations per year. I was a ‘visiting counselor.’ Whenever someone wanted to see me, I went to their home, their office, anywhere. Then something wonderful happened. Just before I was to see someone in my office, I overheard my secretary Marie say to the person, ‘Now don’t you be afraid to tell pastor everything. He will love you no matter what. I’ll be praying for you. The Lord and Pastor will help you, if you will listen.’ I came to the door just in time to see Marie hug this lady, and with that she sent my next appointment in. It changed my counseling approach. From then on, if at all possible, I wanted folks coming for counseling to have the experience of Marie’s kindness and tenderheartedness before they saw me. The ladies would get a hug, and everyone would get a pre-counseling encouragement.”
For today: How will you be kind and tenderhearted with others today?