Devotion 33 – Lent 2015

They say that a lot more can be accomplished if we don’t care who gets the credit. The problem is, we do care who gets the credit. If it’s our idea, we want to be recognized for it. If it is our suggestion, we want that to be known. If it is our strategy that succeeds, we want that pat on the back. If we have done the work, we want the compensation and the credit.

Jesus tells his followers to do good and not expect any thanks or praise or compensation of any kind. Hm. I’m not sure that will keep the church coffers or the church pews filled. But maybe at the heart of what Jesus is saying is a reminder that everything we do is really by the grace of God. All of our ideas and accomplishments result from what we have been given. Any good we do is possible because of we have received much. .

As the late basketball coach Dean Smith put it, “You should never be proud of doing the right thing. You should just do the right thing.”

That kind of attitude can make a world of difference. Much more good is accomplished if we eliminate the expectation that doing good will be rewarded. As Corinthians reminds us, “our competence is from God.”

Lectionary readings for today:

Psalm 119:9-16
Isaiah 43:8-13
2 Corinthians 3:4-11

Prayer: May we relinquish our desire for recognition so that the power of Love may shine more brightly. Amen.

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