Pave your garden with good deeds - 18 January 2019

Hennie Symington

Then Jesus told them this parable: “There was once a man who had a fig tree growing in his vineyard. He went looking for figs on it but found none. So he said to his gardener, ‘Look, for three years I have been coming here looking for figs on this fig tree, and I haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it go on using up the soil?’ But the gardener answered, ‘Leave it alone, sir, just one more year; I will dig round it and put in some manure. Then if the tree bears figs next year, so much the better; if not, then you can have it cut down.’” Luke 13:6-19

The old saying goes, that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. If this were true, then we might just as well give up right now at the start of a new year. But what if the opposite were true? What if, by the grace of God, the way to heaven was paved with good intentions transformed into good deeds? What a change that would be!

Perhaps we should think in more practical terms and more long term about changing the way we live. Here are a few suggestions.

Make the world a better place to live in. There are many ways to do this. Plant a tree, give your undivided attention to a needy person, apologise when you’ve hurt or offended someone in word or deed; try not to gossip or make negative remarks about people who are not like you for one full day.

Complete the good work begun by others. That is how countless service organisations such as the Red Cross, orphanages, homes for terminally ill patients, and hundreds of others continue to survive.

Stop blaming others for everything that goes wrong in society.

Live the way you want your children to live so that the next generation will be inspired to follow in your footsteps.

What if the lamb and the wolf could truly live side by side and they could be lead by a child? Then we could truly start dreaming dreams about a New Jerusalem where God would live among us. God wants us to be holy as he is holy. We may not be perfect like God, but striving to follow in his footsteps, already puts us on the road to a more godly way of life.

Prayer: Father, let not my dreams of a better world be mere wishful thinking. Help me to take a brave step in the direction of a new heaven and a new earth by changing my way of looking at life. Amen


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