Proverbs 3:27 – “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.”
Leaders in Christ’s church are usually working to apply the gospel of grace in all manner of conflicts. It could be a struggling marriage. Or, it could be a conflict due to a divergence in preferred worship styles, or a difference in ministry philosophy or a personality conflict or a strained relationship.
In our efforts to resolve these issues, leaders normally have to focus on what’s not going well and how to solve the problem or resolve the conflict. This is an important process. However, I have seen this process at times cause me to develop a critical spirit and to become easily discouraged and cynical. Also, it can blind me to all the good things that God is doing in and among us.
How quick we are to charge others with wrongdoing and blame them for failing us! How often do we truly look out of ourselves to encourage others? According to our verse above, a question we must keep before us is this: What are the good words to speak and the good deeds to do that God is calling us to say and do today? This doesn’t mean that we don’t at times rebuke and admonish others. However, the key in our admonishing, rebuking and teaching is to make sure that the Word of Christ, not our own words, are richly dwelling in our hearts and minds (See Colossians 3:16).
It is in our hands to do others in our families, work places, and churches great good or great evil. At times, we have to draw line in the sand and answer the question: Which will it be for me?
Proverbs 3:27 encourages me to become more intentional about the following: When God puts it upon my heart to share an encouraging word and do a kind deed for someone, I should heed this prompting of His Holy Spirit promptly, deliberately, and without question.
This should happen with our focus upon Jesus who endured the curse of death, judgment and separation from the Father that we deserved. He did not refuse to do us the ultimate good of restoring us to God and extending to us forgiveness, peace, acceptance, and true communion with His Father.
Actively reflecting on this fills our hearts and minds with thankfulness and joy, but it should also humble us to become more intentional in actively doing good to others since He continues to do us immense good.