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Doing the Right Thing the Right Way

 
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We, as followers of Christ, want to do the right thing.  I've heard, more times than I can count, a soul at the altar crying out to God to help him overcome weakness and for the strength to follow Christ wholeheartedly.  We truly do want God's will at work in our lives. What I want to take a look at is the need to not only do the right thing, but to do it the right way.
 

A short poem about an errant child goes like this:
A fly entered into our room, And I decided to kill it with a broom.
So when it landed on Mama's head, I hit it hard and was sent straight to bed!

It's not enough to do the right thing.  As the little poem points out, it's not enough to kill the fly but we need to use an acceptable method to carry out the demise of the fly.  In God's kingdom we are called to a high standard.  We can't just handle the things of God with a casual, nonchalant approach.  God deserves better than that.  He deserves reverence and honor.  And He requires us to not only do the right things but we are required to do them the right way.

Oswald Chambers, in the book My Utmost for His Highest stated, "If we are going to live as disciples of Jesus, we have to remember that all noble things are difficult.  The Christian life is gloriously difficult, but the difficulty of it does not make us faint and cave in, it rouses us up to overcome."  We must be roused to handle the things of God both right and rightly.

We can see a number of examples in scripture where the right thing was done the wrong way and the results were deadly.  Moses loved God.  Moses loved the people God gave him to lead.  Moses really, really wanted to do the right thing.  But, as we know, there was a point when he did the right thing - getting water for the children of Israel - but the wrong way: he struck the rock instead of speaking to it.  God's judgment was immediate and the result was painful for Moses.

King David is called a man after God's own heart.  David's love of God is powerfully evidenced in the Psalms.  David wanted to do the right things.  But there was the time that he wanted to move the Ark of the Covenant.  It was the right thing to do but he did it the wrong way and the result was death.

We know that, as it says in Romans 8:1, "Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."  We are no longer under the law but we live under grace. However, God does not change.  He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  If it was important for Moses, if it was important for David, then it's important for us.  The Old Testament teaches us about God's personality.  And we can see that God cares about how things are done as well as what things are done. 

In the New Testament we are told to "study to show your self approved".  We are told to "give joyfully".  We are told to work that we "ůmay have something to share with those in need".  How are we doing?  Are we studying God's word with a purpose?  Are we giving joyfully or just giving?  Are we working to give or to gain?  Are we doing it the right way?

A friend of mine from England was teasing me one time.  He wanted to demonstrate how the Brits use "left-handed compliments", so he said to me, "My friend said that you don't have the brain of a gnat but I defended you and said that you did!"  We all howled and  I've used that line a number of times since then.  However it graphically shows how a compliment can be turned into an insult.  The right thing the wrong way.

It says in John 12:24, "Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed.  But if it dies, it produces many seeds."  A single grain of wheat is of no use at all.  A bird would starve on a single grain of wheat.  The only purpose for a single grain of wheat is to die.  The only purpose for my life is to die - that Christ might live through me.

It all really comes down to control.  We all like to be in control.  That's what got Moses in trouble.  That's what got David in trouble.  And that's what has gotten me in trouble so many times.  But only as we die to ourselves, only as we do the right things ,God's way, will we see the increase, the blessings, the producing of many seeds.  Amen!

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This site was last updated 01/12/05