Do you ever wonder why we do what we do? I’ve had that on my mind recently. All around us we see the poisoned fruits that grow from diseased decisions. People hurt; lives ruined; abounding disillusionment. Yet we, who choose to follow the Bible’s ways, may be seen as beings from another world. (In truth, we are!) Yet even in the face of criticism, incredulity, and sometimes animosity, we continue doing what we know is right.
I recently saw some words that very powerfully express that divine determination. Among other places, these words below were found in Robert Griffin III’s locker when he left Redskins Park. RGIII was a star footballer whose career ended due to a string of injuries. He was known as a strong Christian, but he was tested by the collapse of his dreams. Many sources mention that the words were also found on Mother Teresa’s Orphanage wall; some say in her very room. You may have seen them before. If so, take a fresh look in the light of your present circumstances and condition.
People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.
FORGIVE THEM ANYWAY.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
BE KIND ANYWAY.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends, and some genuine enemies.
If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you.
BE HONEST AND SINCERE ANYWAY.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.
BE HAPPY ANYWAY.
The good you do today, will often be forgotten.
DO GOOD ANYWAY.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.
GIVE YOUR BEST ANYWAY.
In the final analysis, it’s between you and God.
IT WAS NEVER BETWEEN YOU AND THEM ANYWAY.
I was thinking . . .
What do we do anyway, caring only for God’s approval?
Why do we live overseas, far from our loved ones?
Why do we give our time, our strength, our money?
Why do we do battle with our fears, be they many or few? Some fears are constant battles; some are short, tough skirmishes. But we face them and go on. Anyway.
Why do we get up and speak to a crowd when we would rather work in our office alone? Some of us are natural speakers. But if you’re like me, public speaking isn’t exactly your greatest love. Yet we do it anyway, trusting that God will make the seed grow.
Why do we have to make so many decisions about how to educate our kids when it would be so easy at home? Yet we struggle through those issues anyway.
There are hundreds more, “Why do we . . .?” questions we could ask.
But our answers come down to this:
Our deepest desire is to love, honor, and serve our Father.
Our lives are not lived to do as we please. Our hope and goal is that our lives will lead many more to follow God and His plans for their lives.
The world will not understand us. Even some of our friends and relatives cannot understand our passion. Some, misunderstanding our passion, get quite angry at our choices. And, wherever we are in this increasingly hostile world, trouble or persecution can break out at any moment. In our host country, a local pastor was abducted several months ago, with no word of his whereabouts and no ransom demands. Nothing.
But at the end of the day, at the end of this life, we want to hear, “Well, done good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your master.” We do it for Jesus.
As Paul said,
“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” — Galatians 6: 9
Don Harris and Marty Nystrom wrote a great song about that. Here are the words.
Don’t grow weary in doing well,
Don’t surrender in the fight;
Keep on storming the gates of hell,
Keep on doing what you know is right.
For there will be seasons of testing
And there maybe weeping for a night,
But soon we’ll be reaping the blessing
If we keep pressing on towards the prize.
Keep on praying in the Spirit,
Keep on walking in the light;
Don’t be fearful or discouraged,
Keep on doing what you know is right.