Summary: This is a sermon based on the Second General Rule of the Methodist Societies.

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(This sermon has text, but are talking points and was expounded when preached).

What if you were the woman Elijah asked for help 1 Kings 17:8-16)?

Ill: In my own life, that when I wasn’t helping, didn’t seem to be many there when I needed help. But when I was a generous and caring person…

The woman of Zarephath’s jar was never empty, there was always meal, and always oil.

Last week, General Rule 1 – “Do no harm and avoid every kind of evil”. The second rule suggests that it is not enough just not to do harm, but that we must “Do good of every possible sort”.

John Wesley said:

Do all the good you can,

By all the means you can,

In all the ways you can,

In all the places you can,

At all the times you can,

To all the people you can,

As long as ever you can.”

I can sum it up in seven words for 2007:

“Do all the good you possibly can!” It is taking the do no harm rule a step further and spreading the generosity of Christ to the world.

Ill: (1) A woman tells a story about her grandson Patrick. He was with his mother who had been going through radiation treatments and they stopped at the store. His mother was in a hurry and didn’t really feel well. But Patrick saw a woman in need.

She was riding around the store in a motorized wheelchair with a small basket on the front. The basket was loaded with groceries and the woman was also piling her lap with groceries. Patrick wanted to help. His mother said “Patrick we don’t have time”.

Patrick decided to help anyways. He went to the front and got a basket and then helped load all the groceries in the basket. He then followed the woman throughout the store. Stayed with her at the checkout and helped push her basket to her car.

“When he got to the car her son who is in his thirties from the look of it was sitting in the front seat playing a video game! Patrick tapped on the window and said, “Hey, buddy, are you gonna help unload these groceries?” The stunned man got out and asked his mother where she found this kid. She told him she didn’t find him–that he had found her. He helped to unload the groceries and put them into the car all the while getting an earful from his mother.

When Patrick was finished she offered him money for what he did. Patrick refused the money because, as he told her, “We’re supposed to do all the good we can do.” Here is a child who gets his allowance from us because their medical expenses are so high and he is saying, “I don’t want the money because the Lord wants me to do all the good I can do.” We too are called to do all the good we can possibly do. Not just a little good. Not just a few things good. Not just an occasional good for our close circle of friends, but to do all the good we possibly can do.

Ill: In the movie “Pay it Forward” they were supposed to do 1) something that someone couldn’t do for themselves, and then asked 2) instead of paying it back, they were to pay it forward. This set off an unstoppable chain reaction of doing good.

Ill: Back in September of 2002 you might remember a story coming out of San Antonio. There were long lines waiting outside. The Parking lots and side streets were jammed with traffic. You might have though it was the visit of the Pope, or the President, or a major rock concert. Instead I’m talking about the lines for opening day of the Krispy Kreme Donut Shop. Lines out the door, and around the corner. I wish that was a story about a church opening! We have something greater than any donut shop. We have life changing power! The good feeling isn’t from inside the creamy donut, but the good feeling is from knowing that God loves us so much. We have something to share with the world, and so we need to do all the good we can.

I wondered how we might talk about doing good and yet I’ve actually tortured you with talk about donuts. And so as the first act of goodness, I thought about having a dozen donuts for the person who has the red sticker in their hymnal, but instead I’ve decided that “to do all the good I possibly can” I need donuts for everyone.


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