Daily Devotional for April 22, 2021

While on vacation, I noticed a neighbor was reworking a long barbwire fence.  He was replacing all the wooden posts that had rotted out through the years.

He has a tractor with a post hole digger but, when you are a one-man show, it’s not the easiest thing to use.

I am blessed to have the equipment that makes digging post holes much easier.  So, I called and arranged a time to go over and dig all the holes he needed.  I was sure I could get it done in half a day.

As we started digging holes, everything was going smoothly until I pulled the Bobcat through a grove of trees that had grown next to the fence.  That was the moment I saw all the poison ivy vines.

Just for the record, poison ivy and I don’t mix.  I always end up getting a Prednisone shot, which is also the exact same moment Shannon decides to really get on my nerves for the next two weeks.

 Shannon says my irritability is related to the shot but I’m not so sure.  The only thing I do know is that my marriage is always in trouble when I get a Prednisone shot.

We dug all the holes in half a day and sure enough, I ended up with poison ivy on my neck.  So, the real fun is about to begin.

When my neck started itching, the first thought that went through my head was, “No good deed goes unpunished.”  This got me thinking.

An important part of being an obedient, faithful Christian is to do whatever we can to lighten the heavy loads others carry.   This can mean a caring phone call, a hot meal, giving money to the needy, a pat on the back, protesting against an injustice, working on a mission trip, writing a card to the Member of the Week, building a home with Habitat for Humanity, the list goes on and on….

In my case, the good deed was using my heavy equipment to help a neighbor.  Did it backfire?  You bet.  But that doesn’t mean I should no longer help.  In fact, good deeds usually require effort and, in some cases, even sacrifice.  It goes with the territory.

So, the next time you are doing a good deed and something inconvenient happens, remember Jesus did the greatest good deed of all-time.  It was inconvenient, sacrificial, and necessary for us to be saved.  But he did it because he knew it was God’s will.

God’s will for us is to help others.  Any sacrifice we make will pale in comparison to what Jesus did for us.

Jesus said, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”  (Matthew 5:16)

As Pastor Hubert used to say, “Love is a verb.”

Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, today I give myself to you without reservation or hesitation.  Please use me to lighten someone’s heavy burden.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

In church, when I was a little boy, we used to sing, “And they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love, yes they’ll know we are Christians by our love.”

Truer words were never spoken.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.
Tom Robbins