Thursday - “Good Intentions”

Bible Reading: 1 John 3:18; James 4:17

Frank Clark once said, "What great accomplishments we would have in the world if everybody had done what they had intended to do." Wow, this one hits me right between the eyes. Margaret Thatcher once said, "NO one would remember the Good Samaritan if he only had good intentions." John says in 1 John 3:18, "Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed or truth."

When we all think about our intentions to do good, how many of us put it on our calendar?  How many of us ask ourselves which path will result in my intended result?  Clayton Christiansen, a Rhodes Scholar who attended Harvard Business School, writes about how he had observed the fates of his Harvard classmates from 1979. He said he had seen more and more of them come to their reunions unhappy, divorced and alienated from their children. He goes on to say that he can guarantee that not one of them had a deliberate strategy of this end result when they graduated. Their intentions would have been just the opposite, but this resulted as a direct result of their choices and not ultimately doing what they had intended to do.

So often, we allow the desires of an unholy heart make our choices.  So how can we make good on our intentions? I believe first we have to stop and ask God to help us. Then, plan to do good. Put it on your calendar. Many times, we look at doing good as a chore. One thing that helps an athlete get up at 5:00 AM and work out, run when he or she doesn't feel like it, or do the same free throw 100 times in a row is the feeling that they will feel with their team mates when they win a championship. So we should think about the way someone will feel when we help them, how a shut-in will smile when we visit them, and how a needy child will feel Christmas morning when we make sure they have the same experience that our child does. Also, think about the spiritual blessings we will experience when we do good things and give God the glory. A few years ago my mom called me to tell me that a Man who had been very important to me growing up had passed away. I said, "Oh no, I meant to go by and see him this week." She quickly responded, "we  just can't put those things off." Today, think of someone you had planned to visit or call to encourage, and don't put it off any longer.

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