Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.
1 Peter 2:12
For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves.
1 Peter 2:15-16
A Bible teacher explained that when she first began getting serious about her walk with Christ, she felt the Lord prompting her to return her grocery carts after shopping. It felt like such a small gesture, and she had many excuses for why she could just leave it in the parking lot. For two years she worked on this habit until she could finally do it without thinking.
She goes on to explain that, as Christians, we need to get used to doing the small stuff when no one is watching. She believes that if she hadn’t started with this small habit, she would not have been able to grow to where she is today, having an impact on millions throughout the world.
We don’t have to do some big grand gesture to show the world Jesus’s love. His love can be seen through our everyday habits and gestures. Holding the door open for a stranger. Smiling at the flustered cashier. Paying for the car behind you in the coffee drive-thru line.
When we practice these small acts, we build a character that is more like God’s, a character of kindness, generosity, and goodness. Then if God does ever prompt us to complete a big gesture, we’ve built the obedience muscles to follow through.
I often think of a big-box retailer that has, in my opinion, the biggest shopping cart challenge. I never go to this store and not need a shopping cart. Does anyone? Then they have no shopping cart racks in their parking lots. You have to walk it all the way back to the store. But there’s more. The carts aren’t even stored behind the first door– you have to walk through the second door to return it.
I often think of Joyce in these moments—when I don’t want to make the extra effort to put the cart in the inside rack. Then I walk the few extra steps inside, sliding the cart back into the others knowing I’m practicing obedience and showing God’s goodness in a small way. Carts today. Who knows what tomorrow?
- Spend time in prayer asking God who can bless today.
- What is a small gesture you can do to share God’s goodness in your community?