Summary: Wise people know when to, whom to, and how to do good.
Wise Living Series #4
Big Idea: Wise people know when to or when not to, whom to or whom not to, and how to or how not to do good.
Proverbs 3:26; 11:17-31
Welcome back to our series – Wise Living Series. We’re discovering principles for wise living. We started this series by describing wisdom as that God-given ability to discern God’s will and do them. Then we said that wise people have a sense of what God wants and have plans to accomplish them. These have a sense of their God-given destination and have plans to arrive at their destination. We also said that wise people take initiative. They don’t just sit passively waiting for things to happen. They pray, wait on God while seeking for ways to meet their needs. This principle applies to a running vehicle. A vehicle goes somewhere my steering the wheel while the car is moving.
Today we are going to look into another expression of wisdom. Wise people do good. While most people do good, wise people know when to or when not to, whom to or whom not to, and how to or how not to.
What is the kindest act you have ever done for someone?
Visiting a “lady pastor” friend who was engaged to a brother who had a case of leprosy. Many of the believers and pastors criticized this fellow pastor. Some were saying, she must be desperate to go for just anyone. Some were saying, she had no taste. Others were criticizing the man for taking advantage. He caught a good one. One day the Holy Spirit told me to go and visit them. It was not going to be an official visit. Just a casual visit. I was not to go to preach at the church. I was just going to visit them and encourage that sister. The only problem was the distance, the unthinkable discomfort, and my back problems. You see I could not take a jeepney, seat sideway, without hurting my back. And when my back hurt, it really hurt. It was going to be a long ride – I think about 7 hours. It took a whole day – 7-8 hours. When Emma and I arrived there, I had problem standing. My back was beginning to swell for seating too long. That night, I sat with the brother and our friend to tell them that we have come to be with them. We were there to support them. We were there to stand with them. Both just cried and cried thanking us for accepting them – for not being scared of him. I was “scared”. So why did I do it? Because I cared. Because he was my brother in Christ. Because she was my sister in Christ. Because she was feeling alone. Because she needed someone to be there.
Could I be a little mystical for a moment? When we left their place I felt good. A wave of warmth and well-being flowed through me. I did not mind an aching back. Emma and I did something good. We made a difference in two people’s lives. We made them feel loved, accepted, and important. The frustration and anxiety that had so filled me for most of the day started to decapitate. I felt like my parched, dusty soul had just been washed by the warm summer rain. I felt really good.
You know that man after they married came to Bible School. And you know what, he was one of my best students. He was intelligent. He interacted well. He knew how to think. He developed enough confidence to start preaching. And one of the last news I heard was, “He was beginning to preach even better than other pastors.” He was becoming known to be “deeper in preaching than others.”
What Proverbs 11:17 says is true. Our souls are nourished when we are kind. We feel good when we show goodness and kindness. Not that we are proud. But we feel good, closer to God, knowing that we have been a channel of His goodness.
This is not only true to adults it is also true with kids and young people. I remember how my whole family felt once when we were invited to collect money for the blind in Hong Kong. My kids are normally shy with people. So that day, they started quite slow. But soon they were enjoying standing under the heat of the sun, smiling at people, saying “Thank you” (mkoy) and putting stick on the people who gave. We did not have breakfast and a very late lunch but we did not mind. We were exhausted that day. I was going to preach that day. The kids were kind of hungry. But we did not mind that. We just had the most exciting experience – we know we were helping people – helping in a worthy cause.