In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Anyone can choose to lie on bed of roses and take the chances of being pricked or severely scratched. It can be a good experience or one that you will never do again. Yet, it is personal experiences like this that reveal to us the differences between good deeds and sin. Like the bed of roses, sin is appealing to the sin nature but in the end the cuts and sores from the thorns tells you that the bed of roses was not as good as it looked. It doesnít take long to know whether you like or dislike your experience depending upon how you feel when it is over.
For the most part good deeds are life building blocks that leave everyone in better shape because of the effort to do good. When good deeds are done you always benefit in some way for the rest of your life. Its common sense to do good deeds for those your deeds builds a solid relationship with people God wants us to love.
On the other hand, we all appreciate the times when good deeds are done specifically for you? It raises our self-worth and affects your outlook on life. It heightens your awareness that someone values you as a person and considers your wellbeing as worth the effort to good yourself. Good deeds reflect the relationship you have with God and his love, because those deeds are remembered for the rest of our life.
No one has ever held a grudge for someone who has made your life easier or more enjoyable. Who gets angry when the monotony of life is broken with humor and it is not at your expense? Life is better when the tensions and distress of life is eased because of a good joke or a picture of a cat lying on his back and the dog nursing kittens. As a result, good deeds are things we can thank God for and it is serving the needs of one another are what giving is all about.
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Hebrews 10:24
Who is going to stop you from doing good things or who is going to harm you if you consistently help others? (1 Peter 3:13) The good things you do for others act as an incentive for other people to return what you have done. (Galatians 6:7) Good deeds initiate a win, win situation. You win from the good deed and the same good deed improves both you and the recipient's outlook on life. You win again when the people you help are inclined to deepen their relationship with you and God.
Itís not easy to love your enemies or to do good to those harm you. What makes doing good deeds difficult is that when you want to do good the law of sin works against you. Every excuse that prevents the good deed comes to the forefront of our mind. Thoughts like why are you doing this to a person that abuses you on a regular basis? Why be nice when youíre going to get hurt again. Why do those thoughts enter your mind at that precise moment you want to do something good? Where did those thoughts come from? Stranger still, the reasons go away the minute you do good?
Whose thoughts are in control when God demands that we do the thing we want other people to do to us? Who benefits the most when your thoughts cause you to do nothing? When you do nothing Satan is polishing his trophies because he stopped you cold in your tracks. We donít always look to God who prepared good works for us to do but we look for praise when you have done good, especially the words, well done.
So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. Romans 7:21
Doing good deeds cost time, effort and money, but itís the thought that counts. Good deeds often require you to use the graces of God that he gave you to use. Just listening to the lonely, being there for a friend or praying for another person is a good deed and shows your concern for their wellbeing.
God said that we were created in Christ Jesus to do good works and we were to honor one another above ourselves. God also asks that we be good especially to our brothers and sisters in Christ. In other words, we need to practice love within our family as much as we need to do good for sinners. Letís remember that we have as much opportunity to shun evil as we do to take advantage of the moment to do good deeds.
Godís love is not physical in its nature but spiritual. When we look at the effects of Godís love, we see that God sent his son to reconcile men back to God. He chose to have compassion on sinful man and responded by giving the world his son to be sacrificed as a Lamb for the sins of the world. Every deed Jesus accomplished was a demonstration of the agape love of God, which is a love of benevolence characterized with good deeds.
What kind of examples would we be to those outside of Godís kingdom if we were like Christ? Doing good things is a way to build his kingdom through the demonstration of Godís love. We should desire to become the instruments that God can use to build his kingdom and become like Jesus Christ who is the example everyone in the world needs to see. Jesus said, what good are we doing for the kingdom of God if we only do good to those who love us? Good deeds are the doorway that lets the people of this world see Godís love practiced by those who love him. Any deed you perform increases the potential to lead someone to Christ because the bad deeds of Christians drive sinners away.
When we look at the nature of sin we find that it is destructive to the person who sins. Ultimately, the indulgent, the depraved and self-centered man has no concern over the effects of doing evil things. Instead they can justify their actions as right. Sin produces personal ruin, pain and suffering that affects the victim. Sin is deceptive and contagious. Sin produces the desire for revenge, but in taking revenge anyone who returns evil for evil becomes as bad as the person who inflicted you with pain. In the long run, the victim must sin to have his or her revenge. When does it all stop? The evil of sin only yields bad things for you affecting the trust people have for you. Sin causing your inner circle of friendís shrink and ultimately front row seats in the lake of fire