Plug In…Pull Forward
Scripture Reading: Matthew 5:13-20
Key Verse: Matthew 5:16
In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
We’ve been talking all month about getting busy building God’s Kingdom, which equals “plugging in.” But where are we going? What does the result look like? Is there a snapshot of the finished product? In my opinion, our scripture for today gives us the answer to these questions: People around us, who see our good deeds, see God and praise Him! Our work is successful if our Father in Heaven receives the praise out of our efforts.
In our world, there are many good organizations and clubs that do good deeds for their communities, but most of them do not point toward God, before, during and after their activities. They get the praise, not our Father in Heaven! If we are going to “pull forward”—making progress in Kingdom terms—we must give the praise to our Father. Interestingly, Matthew 6 starts off warning with the words: “Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by men” (Matthew 6:1). At first sight, that may seem contradictory to Matthew 5:16, but look closer. Note the motivation factors in each of these verses. Matthew 5:16 tells us to give the praise to our Father, while Matthew 6:1 warns us not to steal that praise for ourselves. Both instructions are encouraging good deeds, but when we plug in, it must not be motivated by our need for the spotlight. We pull God’s Kingdom forward when our Father in Heaven is center stage!
Father, I live and breathe because of your mercy and kindness. Please correct any wrong motives in my service to your Kingdom. In Jesus’ Name, amen.