“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).
True goodness is untiring—not only in a few isolated instances, but cheerfully doing a good deed day after day for an undetermined period, especially if those deeds are taken for granted by the recipients. During those times, we need to keep our focus on God for the needed strength to persevere (James 1:12).
True goodness is sacrificing our time and money—giving financially even beyond our ability, like the Macedonian Christians (2 Corinthians 8:3); it is also an act of faith when we give time we do not have. We’ll always be too busy to help others unless we truly understand God’s importance of continuing to do good deeds.
A less obvious, but crucial, need which many people have is a good listener—our attention more than our advice. Many are so starved for the genuine interest of another person that even a little concern from someone who cares goes a long way.
In Galatians 6:10, Paul writes, “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” Our responsibility is to our fellow believers first, then unbelievers. For some time, I must admit, I thought doing good deeds for the unbeliever would show the love of Christ, and was, therefore, paramount. Then the Lord showed me, while that is important, it is when the unsaved see us loving each other in the body of Christ that they are won and desire this fellowship also.
Good deeds need to begin at home. Paul also says in 1Timothy 5:8 “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” If we do righteous deeds for others but neglect the needs of our spouse, parents, or our children, we are not exercising goodness.
Our good deeds such as feeding the hungry, giving water to the thirsty, clothing the needy, showing hospitality to strangers, attending the sick, and visiting those in prison—do not earn our admission to heaven but are necessary and compelling evidence that we are, in fact, bound for heaven.
Opportunities for doing good are not interruptions in God’s plan for us, but part of that plan. By showing grace to others, we demonstrate the character of our Father and prove ourselves to be His children.
Show me the way, Lord, let my light shine
As an example of good to mankind.
Help them to see the patterns of Thee,
Shining in beauty, lived out in me. –Neuer