Do you want to do Good for God?
There is a kind of drive that can feel holy, and yet it’s nothing but pride – this feeling that we are supposed to be doing something great with our lives. Something that will “give God glory” while “making a name for ourselves,” which is simply to “bring glory to self”. These desires are contradictory and do not align with one another.
Perhaps you feel that you should be doing something “great and worthy” with your life like planting a church, starting an orphanage in Africa or an NGO in Asia, or maybe writing a best-seller book about faith or some other spiritual topic. Again, I wonder if God’s perspective of something “great” is the same as ours.
And more often than not, we may not even act on these grand thoughts. Most of the time, we’re simply entertaining the idea but allow day after day to pass without taking even the first step to make it a reality. Besides, we justify our lack of action by saying we do not have enough time, money, or resources to move forward on all of our good intentions. Perhaps, we contemplate, that the right day and circumstances will finally come to make things happen.
If only we could get credit for all our good intentions.
Even if we are really willing to “give it all up” or to “give it all away” to do something crazy like moving to another country for “the sake of the gospel”, our idea of “a great sacrifice” may only be just a small baby step of simple obedience to fulfill God’s own plan, which is far greater than anything we could dream up. As we learn to listen to His voice and walk in His ways, we begin to realize how our greatest visions are pale in relation to God’s plans for us and those around us. “Giving it all up” should be a basic part of any Christian’s mindset and is not reserved for a special few. And whatever comes forth from our efforts should be to the glory of God and Him alone.
“Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.” Luke 17:33
There is a lot of good that needs to be done, not for God but because of Him. Simply because “God is good.”
“We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10
One of the most important lessons I learned was during a very difficult time when I felt like I was failing as a Christian. God showed me that nothing I can do will make Him love me more, and nothing that I fail to do will make Him love me less.
His love is unconditional and He is “in need of nothing.”
This doesn’t give me a grace card to do whatever I want in His name; it simply gives me the freedom to stop trying so hard to do good things out of my own strength and to trust that
“He which has begun a good work (in me) will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ“
Whenever the focus is on my ability to do something it takes my focus off of Him. In the words of an anonymous African worker in the documentary “The End of Churchianity“:
“God is not looking for your ability, he is looking for your availability.”
And wherever we end up going or staying, we have to realize that we burden ourselves by carrying our own baggage of theologies, ideas, and denominations with us to the ends of the earth. In fact, God doesn’t need them wherever He sends us because He is already there. He was there long before us, and He will still be there long after we leave – doing what He does best….drawing people to Himself through His love.
The best thing we can do is to open our eyes and our hearts to what God is already doing where He places us and to pray that He will fill us with His Spirit and enable us to do what we cannot do out of our own strength. Then, if any good comes out of our lives, which will be a miracle in itself, we simply get to point to Him as the source and reason.
The only way to be truly humble is to give all the glory to God.
Maybe we will get to plant seeds, but the growing process is always up to God. Maybe we will arrive when the harvest is ready and simply be part of the reaping process. There is no greater joy than to see others find the Treasure of life in Christ. One may plant, another waters, but it’s God who gives the increase!
Yes. Let us do good,
“…and let us provoke one another to love and to good works.” Hebrews 10:24
“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Galatians 6:9
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