May I share with you a “WOW!” quote today?
Listen to this …
“Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.” – John Wesley
That’s it! That’s it, my friends! In those 42 words, we have discovered the secret of living Christianity in its fullest and at its finest.
The Holy Spirit, in the Book of Acts, tells us this riveting fact about the life of Jesus:
“You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good …” – Acts 10:38
If Jesus went about doing good … then I believe that is excellent advice for each one of us.
Think of what a difference it would make if every believer … if everyone who called themselves a “Christian … on every continent on the earth … simply made it his or her life’s goal to go about doing good.
Think of what a resounding difference that would make!
Do good always.
Do good every day.
Do good to every person.
Do good in every place.
Do good every single time.
Do good as long as you live.
It is, after all, what Jesus would do.
When in doubt … do good!
When angry … do good!
When wronged … do good!
When frustrated … do good!
Young moms … when impatient … be good to those little children under your care!
Moms of teens … when frustrated … try being good to those hormonal young people who used to cling to your legs with a lethal grip!
Employees … be good to your co-workers and to your boss when mistreated or misunderstood.
Adults … be good to your aging parents because someday you will be them!
Be good to people who think differently than you think.
Be good to people who talk differently than you talk.
Be good to people who vote for different candidates than you vote for.
Be good to people whose skin is a different shade than yours is.
Be good to people whose paycheck is less than yours is.
Be good to people who go to a different a church than you do.
What does it mean to do good, though? What does it mean to be a good person?
Certainly a “good” person has the right to one’s opinions and convictions. Certainly a “good” person doesn’t have to be a milquetoast and keep quiet about everything that is happening in the world today!
While the aforementioned statement is true indeed, it is also true that a person who is committed to goodness will find a way to share his or her opinions with wisdom, with kindness and even with a touch of humor thrown in.
I believe that being good and being kind are intrinsically linked. “Goodness” and “kindness” may be the Siamese twins of our Christian faith.
I don’t believe that you can be truly good without being sincerely kind. Neither can you be truly kind without being sincerely good.
The world that we live in today is reeling for answers … for directions … for peace … and for justice.
The people who are living at this historical moment have not found the answers that they are looking for in political agendas or in biased reporting. Humanity has not found the answers to the world’s dilemmas by reading great pieces of literature; they have not found it in the entertainment that is shown in movie theaters nor have they found it by observing the lifestyles of the rich and famous.
And sadly, the church has not done an excellent job of offering help or hope to a world filled with desperate housewives, desperate marriages, desperate parents, desperate wanderers or desperate truth-seekers.
Where is the goodness that the world is groping to find? Where is the kindness that will bring peace to violent confrontations?
Goodness and kindness is found in me … it is found in you. It is up to us … to me and to you … to be a bold and vivid representation of all that is good and all that is kind.
If I am not good … who will be good?!
If I am not kind … who will be kind?!
This week, my blog comes with a homework assignment of the very best kind. I challenge you, in the Name of Jesus Christ Who went about doing good, to do a random act of goodness this week.
Buy coffee for a policeman.
Treat a child to an ice cream cone.
Pay for a family’s meal at a restaurant.
Invite a family to your home who looks different than your family looks.
Hand a $20 bill to a single mom.
Engage in a conversation with the elderly … with the tattooed … with the homeless … with the addict … with a businessman.
And while you’re at it … be kind. Just be kind.
Smile at strangers.
Mow your neighbor’s lawn.
Tell the mom down the street that she is doing a good job.
Bake cookies and give them to the kids in the neighborhood.
Write a thank-you note to your pastor.
Just think what a different world this would be if rather than spouting opinion, rhetoric or political bias we all determined to be good and to be kind.
Simply good and completely kind.
I think that we could change the world with that kind of determination. Perhaps it would give the media less to report on and politicians less to yell about.
At the very least … it would change someone’s life.
How about that?! You and I have the power to change someone’s life not by winning an election or by holding a microphone behind the glare of a network camera.
We change the world by being good to one person at a time. We can change the world by being kind every day in every day.
Let’s do it. Let’s just do it.