«Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven» Matthew 5:16
MATT PERMAN says that while attending a Christian leadership and technology conference he had the honor of hearing a lecture by Dan Cathy. During his presentation, Dan Cathy, President of Chick-Fil-A, a restaurant franchise specializing in chicken, quoted Matthew 5:16: «Let your light so shine before men, that they may see how clean you left the parking lot and glorify your Father in heaven.»*
Did you notice the change? Cathy modified the original version of the verse. What Jesus actually said was, «Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.» Jesus wants the whole world to see our «good works.» What we do cannot remain under wraps as a mysterious secret. In fact, Paul says we were created «for a life of good deeds» (Ephesians 2:10, GNT). The question is: What does it mean to do «good deeds?»
We could have a reductionist view of the matter and reply that doing good deeds is limited to matters such as praying, returning tithes, giving offerings, studying the Bible, helping those in need, giving Bible studies, etc., but it goes far beyond that. Luther declared that good deeds are «how we testify that we really are Christians.»» And the most effective testimony is our own life. In that sense, «good deeds» don’t need To be extraordinary actions, the kind that dazzle others and fill our social media accounts with «Likes.»
«Good deeds» will be noticed in routine everyday tasks: cooking, working at the office, eating, playing sports . , . Everything we do should be done with excellence, not so that people will look at us, but so that they will glorify the God who did it through us.
What I’m trying to say through this reflection can be summed up in this phrase by Thomas Carlyle: «All true work is sacred.» Today, as we carry out our simplest responsibilities, let’s remember that, by performing our jobs well, we will have the precious opportunity for our Father’s name to be glorified.