Do Not Withhold Good
Read Proverbs 3:27–28
Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,
when it is in your power to act.
Do not say to your neighbor,
“Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you”—
when you already have it with you.
None of us would want to share freely the times we’ve withheld good from others. But we are human and flawed, and probably fail to act with kindness and goodness more than we’d like to admit. The good news is that as followers of Jesus, we’re not alone and we don’t need to rely on our own strength or character. The Holy Spirit is constantly shaping and reshaping us so that our desires and actions begin to resemble Jesus’ desires and actions. Plus, we are constantly given opportunities to extend goodness—whether with words or actions—to those we encounter. Our job is to lean into those opportunities and allow the Spirit to guide us into love and goodness.
- What came to mind when you read this passage? Who are the people you are most likely to withhold good from? Why is that?
- What has God given you that you can use for the good of others?
- As you get dressed today, say a prayer for those in the world who have a need that they are unable to meet. To make your prayer more specific, pick a country or location where poverty is prevalent and pray specifically for the children in that place.
Father, thank You for Your goodness and the ways You have allowed me to extend it to others. Forgive me for the times I’ve withheld goodness or ignored someone in need because of my own blindness or selfishness. Help me to see the money, talents, and resources You’ve given me as things that I can in turn use to show goodness toward others. Place someone in my path today and guide me into goodness for that person’s sake. I pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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