Don’t you wish that the people you were surrounded with during the holidays weren’t just pasting on a smile and cramming that nagging sense of emptiness down deep with peppermint bark and drowning their frustration with egg nog? We can’t make things good by throwing tinsel on it, especially people. Especially ourselves. Imagine if the people you love could actually be good. Imagine if you could actually be good.
If you’ve given your life to Jesus, you are good.
Romans 15:14, “And concerning you, my brethren, I myself also am convinced that you yourselves are full of goodness.”
But wait a minute! When the Pharisees called Jesus, “Good teacher,” Jesus responded that no one is good except God! So how can we be full of goodness? This is earth shattering! If you’re in Christ, than you are a partaker of the divine nature! God is fused to you and now and your nature, will, attitude, disposition, inclination is for others, wanting their best, unable to stop yourself from caring, blessing, befriending. God has changed you on the inside.
Romans 15:8-9, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth).”
But I don’t feel very nice
Believe it or not, if you’re in Christ, you’re one of the good guys now. You do still have to choose it, but it’s now the most natural choice for you. Good people can do bad things, but that doesn’t make them bad people. And bad people can do good things, but that doesn’t make them good people. Good things coming from bad people are good, but nothing compared to God in us. It’s a dewdrop compared to a diamond. “Therefore, as we have opportunity, (Galatians 6:10) let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”
The fact that you even want to behave better is actually a sign that you have God’s heart. Deep down you wish that you behaved more Godly, but in your heart, where it counts the most, you couldn’t be more Godly. God has made you like him. The mind and flesh have a way to go, but your heart is already there. It may not be what you’re looking for but it’s better. Take the win.
[tweetshare tweet=”Deep down you wish that you behaved more Godly, but in your heart, where it counts the most, you couldn’t be more Godly.” username=”Jrothwilson”]
How can I be nicer?
It’s actually really simple! Yield to God’s goodness in you. That’s a party by party, traffic jam by traffic jam, fruitcake by fruitcake process. Fortunately, the goodness that’s in you, ready to be drawn from, is a deep ocean. His goodness is unquenchable, unstoppable, illimitable, infinite! Unwrap the gift of his Spirit that God has placed inside of you for just such occasions.
[tweetshare tweet=”The goodness that’s in you, ready to be drawn from, is a deep ocean. God’s goodness in you is unquenchable, unstoppable, illimitable, infinite.” username=”Jrothwilson”]
I have a few daughters who are always asking for things and we just don’t have enough to be able to always give them what they want. We have to think about what we have to put off till next month, next birthday, next Christmas and so on. I feel like I’m always telling them to take it easy! But you can look everywhere in the Bible and there’s never a place where people ask God for too much and he says, “Hey man, take it easy!” God’s goodness and his resources are inexhaustible. And that same goodness is 100% present in you by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit!
God with us
Ludwig Nommensen, a pioneer missionary to the Batak tribesmen, was told that he could stay for two years, during which time he studied the customs and traditions that ruled the people. At the end of that time the chief asked him if there was anything in the Christian religion that differed from the traditions of the Batak. “We, too, have laws that say we must not steal, nor take our neighbor’s wife, nor bear false witness,” the chief said. The missionary answered quietly, “My Master gives the power to keep his laws.” The chief was startled. “Can you teach my people that?” he asked. “No, I cannot, but God can give them that power if they ask for it and listen to his word.” The missionary was permitted to stay another six months, during which time he taught just one thing – the power of God. At the end of that time, the chief said, “Please stay! Your law is better than ours. Ours tells us what we ought to do. Your God says, ‘Come, I will walk with you and give you strength to do the thing.’”
So, may the same God who gave himself to you in the person of Jesus, who is called Emmanuel, God with us, give of his goodness through you to all you encounter this Christmas.