Goodness – “But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness…” Gal 5:22
I remember the 1982 movie debut when E.T. pointing to Elliott’s sister Gertie (Drew Barrymore), tells my generation to “Be good.”
Growing up, to “be good” may have looked like helping with the household chores, cutting the grass or getting good grades in school.
I think “goodness” is commonly overlooked, though. Goodness is action; it’s not something we do only for the sake of being virtuous. When we strive to be “good” only for our own benefit, it is not truly goodness that we possess. Does good mean to go to church on Sunday? Does good mean to serve those in need? Does good mean to give regularly?
In Greek, the word goodness means “an uprightness of heart and life.” When we act out of true goodness of the heart, we are obedient to God’s commandments and seek the benefit of others. Our actions come from a place of selflessness, and we place the needs of others before our own.
Jesus Christ is the perfect example of goodness. His ministry and sacrifice is an example of God’s goodness toward mankind. It is GOOD news!
As Christians, we are called to live in a way that reflects the character of Christ. Matthew 5:16 says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Oftentimes, it is the small acts of goodness we do throughout our day that mean the most to those around us. It is in these acts of goodness that we reflect Christ’s character. While it may seem like no one notices, God does. Ultimately, when we show goodness, we bring glory to God’s name.
We are not good for God, we are good because of God.