DOING good all the time is the right thing to do, even if we don’t have to for this is how we strengthen and live up with our covenant with God.
In second Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul told the Church of the Thessalonians that they “should never tire of doing what is good” and that they should never be idle, disruptive and must live according to the teachings. Apostle Paul’s call is a way of affirming our catholic belief that a person is good hence should always do good as it is one’s justification of faith in Christ our God.
Paul’s message is in a way poignant, especially if we consider that people nowadays, for all intent and purposes, are wary of doing good to others for fear of being misinterpreted. This fear of the uncertain has become so deeply woven into the fabric of our pop culture that we see people look the other way when a good deed needs to be done.
How many of us will do the right thing and extend our helping hand when, say, we saw a middle age loud lady fell on the ground. Are we going to keep on walking minding our own business lest we be sued by her should we come to her aid or are we going to stop and be just like the good Samaritan and help? We don’t really realize it but we have become our own world. We think we are doing others good when are actually doing good for ourselves, not our neighbors. For many, the good that they do nowadays are only for their own benefit.
The materialist driven culture that we are immersed to today is one that reinforces the individualist attitude of everyone, societal and gender inequity and ultimately individual selfishness. Thus, it is not surprising anymore to see advertisements in newspapers, radio, television and even the internet about products or brands that promote “self development, self beautification, self help etc…” We are being conditioned to focus everything on our selves and therefore we lose the opportunity to do good to others and we lose sight of that goodness and consequently violate our covenant with God.
By constantly doing good, we are creating a circle of goodness in the world, thus whatever good we did to others will ultimately redound to us through other people’s good deeds. In effect, the world would be a much more better place for us to live. But if we fail to do good then we fail to justify our faith and we break the circle that makes this world and ourselves a reflection of God and his kingdom.
However, I must stress or impress upon you that doing good is a way of life, not a fad or a means to make one feel better. It is of out most importance that we persevere in doing good acts. We should not get tired of doing what is right. Don’t get sick of doing good. Keep on keeping on doing good things. Never stop lifting up those around you if you can. Don’t ever give up on doing good. Do whatever good you can, whenever you can, wherever you can, in whatever ways you can. That is not just the right attitude but the most importantly the correct one.
In the same passage, we are urged by Paul never to be idle or disorderly. We cannot be idle in the absence of good in the world. We cannot allow disorderly conduct to prevail for it is what is demanded of us by our Christian faith. We have to do good.
We all know the old saying that “an idle mind is the playground of the devil” thus Paul, in this passage, also admonishes us from associating ourselves with idle folks for it will do us no good in the long term. The passage we are studying now shows that Paul is concerned that such idle and disorderly people will do mischief sooner or later and therefore will surely be booted out of the community of faith. He does not want us to be mixed in such misfortune.
By writing to the Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul also hopes to get the attention of those who are idle or disorderly to prevent them from doing mischief and encourage them to start working and restore their rightful place in the community of faith.
In conclusion, I say that the good we do should be the product of our love of God, it must stem from our deeply held conviction about our Christian faith. Our good deeds should be the justification of our Christianity, that we would be known to be as such not because of what we say but because of what we do to others.
Truly it is written “…whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”