"Do the right thing. Do it because it's right. Do it right."
When my husband's company decided to move across the country, Joe and I decided not to move with them. Many employees were bitter about the move. Some felt obligated to go with the company, and were resentful about being separated from family and friends. Others felt that moving was not an option for them, and were indignant about being left behind. My husband had a totally different attitude. Even though he elected not to move with his company, he cheerfully and wholeheartedly got busy helping with the move. As soon as he did, some of his coworkers began questioning him. "Why are you helping with this move? You're being left behind!" Some even eyed him suspiciously, asking, "What's in it for you?" Joe would just smile and say that he was doing it simply because he believed it was the right thing to do.
Years ago, I heard a godly man say: "Do the right thing. Do it because it's right. Do it right." I have thought about this man's message many times over the years, and I have even posted his words of wisdom on my kitchen refrigerator for everyone to see. No doubt, my husband's attitude toward his company's move was influenced by these powerful principles. As Joe made up his mind to do what he thought was the right thing in a difficult situation, he became downright joyful. And this is actually scriptural, because the Bible says, "You're one happy man when you do what's right, one happy woman when you form the habit of justice." (Psalm 106:3 MSG) While my husband was surrounded by sour faces, he was able to wear a smile. Don't you think that made him a more effective witness for Christ? You bet it did. And he was honoring the Lord with his attitude and actions. As Proverbs says: "To do right honors God; to sin is to despise Him." (Proverbs 14:2 TLB) No matter what we say with our lips, if our conduct isn't right, we are demonstrating a lack of reverence and respect for the Lord, and we are damaging our witness.
Scripture says: "I, the Lord, search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve." (Jeremiah 17:9-10 NLT) My husband had the right motive when he decided to help his company with their move simply because it was the right thing to do. He wasn't being compensated for it by his company, and he wasn't even getting any special recognition. But he knew that the Lord saw his heart, and that He would honor his good intentions somehow. Besides that, Joe has always taken pride in his work, even when he was doing the most menial tasks. And he has always taken to heart the fact that, "Well-done work has its own reward." (Proverbs 12:14 MSG)
When the Bible talks about performing a job of any kind, it says, "Don't just do the minimum that will get you by. Do your best." (Colossians 3:23 MSG) In other words, do the job right. When Joe set about helping his company move, he threw all his energy into the task, and he did a good job. As he kept his eyes on the Lord, instead of on his employer or coworkers, he was able to resist the temptation to slack off or to feel sorry for himself. The rest of this scriptural passage says: "Work from the heart for your real Master, for God, confident that you'll get paid in full when you come into your inheritance. Keep in mind always that the ultimate Master you're serving is Christ. The sullen servant who does shoddy work will be held responsible. Being a follower of Jesus doesn't cover up bad work." (Colossians 3:23-25 MSG)
After my husband's company moved away, it was almost a year before he could find another job. During that time, he suffered a major heart attack, and we faced some serious financial problems. Would Joe have done things any differently when his company moved, had he known what troubles were up ahead for him? No. Because did the right thing, simply because it was the right thing to do, he has had no regrets. Whatever you are facing today, will you answer God's call to do what is right in His sight?
Prayer: Lord, please give me the courage, the strength, and the grace I need to do the right thing in every situation and circumstance. Remind me often that my motives mean everything to You, and that no matter who I'm dealing with, I'm ultimately serving You. Thank You that as I concentrate on pleasing and glorifying You, I will live a life of satisfaction, fulfillment, and purpose!
- J. M. Farro