Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? 1 Peter 3:13 (NIV).
Who’s going to harm you if you’re eager to do good? Seriously? Peter never lived in the age of social media. Your political opponents will do whatever they can to harm you if it will advance their cause. Urban terrorists, drunk with the power of fomenting violent change, are eager to destroy anyone (or anything) in their way. Uninformed critics will gladly tear you down if you disagree with any part of their dogma. In our “modern” era, the list goes on and on.
Hint: “the list” and the words and actions of the naysayers all mean nothing. Zip. Zero. Nada.
Who is going to harm us means nothing because the love of Jesus is stronger. What anyone says to detract from us or destroy is means nothing because the power of Jesus is found in His peace, not in their words. Anything anyone can do to target us, including physical harm, even death, is meaningless because the resurrection of Jesus has already overcome even their most deviant fantasies.
Generally speaking, those who are eager to do good are not harmed by those who aren’t. Robert Schuller had something of a point: there is God-given power in positive thinking. It’s not just that positive thinking and eagerness to do good become self-fulfilling prophecies. Instead, it is what comes from thinking, then doing, good that allows God to further His kingdom in the face of human depravity.
Think about it. Turning the other cheek is perhaps the most courageous thing a person can do. An act of random kindness usually leads to another, especially when done in good faith for another.
Generally speaking (again), I don’t care for movie sequels. They’re largely unoriginal. Yet that phrase – Act of Random Kindness – stuck with me when we watched “Evan Almighty” a few years ago. That’s the Steve Carrell sequel to “Bruce Almighty.” The up and coming Evan/Carrell moves to DC to take his place as a newly elected Congressman. But a message from God soon has him building an ark just like the one Noah built. Through it, Evan has to learn to rely on faith and vision. Yet, through the process of building a physical ark, God makes it known to him that the real ark He wanted in Evan’s life was that Act of Random Kindness. That kind of ark not only weathers a storm: it builds on itself into something good in the world.
Who can harm you if you are eager to do that?
Peter might agree. Even Steve Carrell might agree. So that’s our challenge today. Especially if you find yourself in a bad situation, perform just one, good act of random kindness for someone today. Launch that ark and see where God takes you.
For further reading: Titus 2:14, Peter 3:14
Lord Jesus, create for me today the opportunity to do an act of random kindness.