Goodness Gracious

But the fruit of the Spirit is goodness. Galatians 5:22-23

Goodness is a difficult word to define but an easy character quality to spot in others. I think it speaks of motivation. This quality, more than the others in this list, is all about the other person. It has the idea of being helpful, beneficial, and generous. It’s a general quality. Even as I write this, I realize the difficulty in pinning down a coherent definition for it.

Lots of people in this world do good things. We might even call them good people. So, what’s the difference? Motivation. For this discussion it’s not important who or what motivates them. However, ‘who is motivating us’ should be the first question we ask, and it should be very clear who is motivating us (James 1 and 1 Corinthians 13 address this)

God knows that when we do nothing in life, we get stale and rusty. We become complacent. We complain and grumble. We criticize and become skeptical. We’re more tolerant of sin that creeps into our lives.

What does it look like? Think of anything at all that could benefit someone else. A kind word or deed or letter or phone call or gift or service or just about anything you can think of. It doesn’t have to be big or elaborate. Do it without expecting a reward and you’ll do fine.

Each person has a circle of influence of 10-25 people. Care to guess where we should be pouring out our goodness? It’s certainly a good place to start. After that, five billion more people await the goodness of God through you.

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