As a follower of Christ, do you ever wonder if you’re doing any good in the Kingdom of God? I do. Often...frequently...regularly...habitually...routinely...ok, all the time. It’s ingrained in me. I could blame it on my DNA, but I’m pretty sure that it’s just another quirk that I’ll always live with. Maybe you do too. So, how do we handle this feeling? Go and do something good for someone.
Go ahead...I’ll wait. It shouldn’t take you too terribly long. There are people all around us who are in need of someone doing something good for them. The deed doesn’t have to be extravagant. It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture. You can do something simple – but tangible. Go do it. Now.
You do know this is what Christians are called to do, right? It’s right there in black and white: “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). I believe Paul did good things for others quite often. Why? Look at what Paul wrote in verse nine: “And let us not grow weary while doing good...” (Galatians 6:9). Paul understood that doing good for others can be tiring. But doing good for the benefit of others is important to growing the Kingdom.
For far too long, the world has viewed the Christian community (specifically the church) with suspicion. Unbelievers are keenly aware of the things we are against. They hear it all the time. Unfortunately, sometimes that’s all they hear. We are not as vocal about the things we are for. In 1 Corinthians 12, Paul compared the church to a body. He mentions the foot, eyes, hand, ears, and nose. In his analogy, Paul said each part (person) of the body (church) has a purpose. I remember reading in one of Rick Warren’s books where he suspected that the unbelieving community views the church as one big mouth, because all they hear is what we’re against. He may have a point. If we are to reach the lost, we must love them. We don’t (and indeed can’t) condone any sin, but we must love the sinner. And the best way to show that love (and share the GOOD news) is to “do good to all.” It’s a well-worn truth: “People don’t care how much you know until they first know how much you care.” This is personal to me because my dad was led to Christ by a man who took him fishing. Jesus said we are to let our light shine so others will glorify God as they see our “good works” (Matthew 5:16).
In the book of Acts, there is an interesting statement that describes the activities of Christ during His personal ministry. Peter is speaking and Luke recorded his message: “...God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him” (Acts 10:38). Bracketed by the supernatural anointing of Jesus with the Holy Spirit, and the healing of those oppressed by the devil, there is a seemingly innocent statement that describes the activities of Christ while on Earth: “who went about doing good.” I find that phrase fascinating. Why? Because as believers, I think we tend to forget the things Jesus did for those He encountered. We like to hear about the miraculous – the healings, the raising from the dead, the turning water to wine and multiplying bread and fish stories. But how often do we pause in our search for the extraordinary so that we may glimpse the ordinary acts of kindness that accompanied the ministry of Jesus?
I believe Jesus did things every day that would not make the front page of the Jerusalem Times. They were simple, small (by our standards for Jesus) acts that demonstrated a loving and gracious heart. The word Luke used to describe the things Jesus did is the only time this particular word is used in the Bible. This word “good” speaks of bestowing benefits to others. These are simple acts of kindness that blessed and/or helped someone else.
What would you say if I asked you if you’d like to serve a meal to Jesus? How about giving Him one of your coats? You’d jump at the chance, wouldn’t you? Well, you can. Jesus said our good done for others is important. To those who had given food and drink to the hungry and thirsty; had visited those in prison; and had provided clothing to those in need; Jesus made a stunning declaration: “...inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me” (Matthew 25:40).
So, take a moment out of your day – every day – to thoughtfully, purposefully, and graciously do something for someone else. It could be a card, a call, a visit, or one of a thousand things that would lift the spirits of someone else. You never know how you’ll bless them. I know this from experience as well. The other day, I got a text from a friend who told me she enjoyed my weekly column, and encouraged me to continue writing. Each Sunday morning I get a frog emoji from a friend to remind me to fully rely on God. Small deeds? Yes. Big impact. You better believe it!
So, go do something good for someone else. I’ll be here waiting while you do. Go ahead. You’ll be glad you did – and so will the recipient of your good deed.