Why are we doing good works? Is it because we are workaholics? Is it because we have things to prove to our fellow Christian brothers and sisters? Or is because we do good works, because it makes God happy?
Sometimes in life we all need to step back and take a good look at the bigger picture. What’s the big picture for those who believe in Jesus Christ? Its simply this, am I spending time loving the Lord God instead of only being bothered about good works?
Here a lesson from the Gospel about Mary and Martha:
38 Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. 40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me. 41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: 42 but one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her. (Luke 10:38-42)
Do take note in the above verses in which Martha was doing good works in serving Jesus but her sister Mary (also these both were the sisters of Lazarus whom Jesus raised from the dead) was paying more attention to Jesus and listening to His Word. Martha had every reason to complain about Mary not helping her serving Jesus. However Jesus didn’t condemn Mary not Martha on this. But he showed Martha that she needed to get her priorities right towards the Lord. What could be this priority? Its that spending time with the Lord God with his Holy Word matters much more than doing good works serving the same Lord God. Don’t get me wrong, but Jesus never told Martha that the service she was doing was a sin or evil but rather he let her know not to get troubled in doing so much good that she forgets to wait on Him.
Verses to reflect on:
- Seek the LORD while you can find him. Call on him now while he is near. (Isaiah 55:6)
- Let all the world look to me for salvation! For I am God; there is no other. (Isaiah 45:22)
- But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33)
- 14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. (James 2:14-17)
- 18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. 24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25 And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead. (James 2:18-26)
- Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:23-25)
- But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. (Galatians 5:16-17)
Be available to Jesus the Lord,
Unto him be of one true accord.
Don’t waiver to the left or right,
But love Christ with all your might.
Be available to the Spirit of God,
And don’t stay in the Babel of Nimrod.
Think of only what is holy, pure and just,
Refrain from all earthly, sensual and demonic lust.
Be available to God our creator,
Don’t worship false gods nor impersonators.
Know that the Lord God does exist,
Believe the Gospel and in his kingdom enlist.
O Lord God help me to speak of your Son Jesus Christ, without shyness nor any fear. Guide me by your Holy Spirit to preach about Jesus, and the Holy Gospel to the lost and the unsaved. May it be a witness to them for their salvation. Bless my mind and memory, that I remember all the teachings of the Holy Scriptures, especially in regards to Jesus the savior of the world. Give me the power to refute and resist the lies of the Enemy, God haters and heretics, about your Son Jesus. Let me speak of the greatness and humility of Jesus Christ. Let me speak of His healing and saving grace. Let me speak of his love and resurrection. Let me speak all of this for your glory and not for myself. I ask this in the name of your Son Jesus Christ. Amen.
O Lord God who created the heavens and the earth, grant that I do more and more good deeds to glorify you. Cause me to speak of Jesus Christ the Saviour, to those in need of healing and counsel. By your Holy Spirit, lead me to works of charity and mercy, so that the poor and the oppressed get relief from their woes. I give up each and every thing that causes me to be selfish, so that I be more generous towards the noble cause of the preaching of the Gospel, to the ends of the earth. Make me more creative in helping others. Take away from me all shyness and fear of doing good works in the world, so that all who see me give glory to you O Lord my Father in heaven. Above all keep sanctifying me and help me to be free from all deception and pride, so that I be a good example to friends and family and all who interact with me. I ask this in your Holy Name. Amen.
O Lord God, help me to grow in perseverance, for the sake of your Holy Name. Don’t let me get overwhelmed, even if all around me people fall away into death, or in sin. Help me know and realize, that my main goal in life is to live and abide in your Holy Word each day. Strengthen me by your Holy Spirit, to keep in mind all the things you have called me out to do. Cause me to to always love and cherish following your Son Jesus Christ, no matter what the world says and does. Grant me the endurance to seek first the Kingdom of God and I know that then you will grant all the things that I need. I ask this earnestly, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
O Lord God, who gives worth to all his creation, help me to live worthily for you. Help me to consider, the length and end of my days, that I might follow worthy pursuits. Take away from me the love of ungodly gain, and ungodly pleasures, by your Holy Spirit. Give me a heart, that only seeks after the right path, at all times. Save me from all deceptions that come from within myself, from the world and from the Enemy of my soul that life is not wasted. Always cause me to ponder your Word like how Mary cherished it once she received your only begotten Son Jesus Christ, the only and true Saviour of the World. I pray that I always realize that you have given me the duty to make the right choices in my life so I glorify you always in all that I say, think and do. I ask this all in the name of Jesus Christ the Redeemer of the world. Amen,
Recently I had a person telling me he lives in the way of a storm which was going to hit his region really bad. He mentioned people are panicking all around the place. I told him not to panic himself but take all the precautions being given by the civil authorities over there. And he agreed to do so. A thought then crossed my mind; why don’t their relatives and friends from other states try to help such people? It’s not possible for everyone to help but it’s not impossible to sincerely care at the same time.
Now a storm of life need not a physical storm. It can be a financial storm; extreme debt and poverty. It can be a medical storm; sudden heart attacks. It can a relational storm; affairs or divorces. What matters is whether you as a believer try to care and help your friends and relatives when they are faced with such storms.
One can give excuses to stop caring and helping, all day long but God knows the human heart all too well. Nothing ever escapes his sight and no one can escape his judgement by acting faithless. That being said God knows your capacity and the extent to which you can help your friends and relatives. It’s just a matter of what you do for them when are faced with the storms of life.
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? (Isaiah 58:7)
But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. (1 Timothy 5:8)
There’s one storm of life people shy away from; a spiritual storm. People keep away from others who face spiritual storms. Such storms can be; doubting God, backsliding, spiritual attacks etc. They will say they don’t know what to do, but my contention is that they can always ask their preachers about situation and then help their friends and family.
So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. (Galations 6:10)
Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. (James 5:14)
Note: This Youtube video is courtesy of The Endless Love of Jesus Ministries