What is Right for Me?

December 14, 2011

My wife and I were watching one of the Star Wars movies. It was actually episode III. There is a scene where young Anakin Skywalker is talking one on one with Emperor Palpatine. They get to talking about the good and dark sides of the force and the Emperor utters these words, “Good is a point of view, Anakin. The Sith and the Jedi are similar in almost every way.”

Those are some powerful words to live by. Really! I see it all around me all of the time. I hear about people talking about what is “right for me” or “right for you.” It all depends on our point of view.

How does this thinking make sense? What someone is really saying is “everything is right.” If I view something as right but you do not, it is at least right for me, which makes it right. We can never tell anyone they are in the wrong because it might not be to them. However you would view telling someone they are wrong as a wrong but I would think it is right, but you cannot tell me I’m wrong because it is wrong to you (read that again. I’m sure it makes sense, somehow).

This kind of thinking is nothing more than just babble. There also seem to be exceptions to these rules. Most people would argue that you cannot tell someone something is wrong unless they are drastic moral issues, like murder. But who draws this line? Who is to say at this point in our history we are just too weak to accept murder and one day we will rise above these preconceived lines to a higher mental state and where murder is allowed.

That illustration may seem a bit drastic but my point is, where do we draw the line? What is the standard for right? What is the standard for wrong?

The first part of Galatians 5:22 goes like this, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness…” In order for us to find a proper understanding of goodness there must be a standard. It cannot just be based on each of our individual feelings. For goodness to really exist is must be greater than each of us. There must be a higher standard.

That standard is Jesus. Jesus was good all of the time. I am finding more and more how all of the fruit of the Spirit intertwine. It is hard to talk about one without the other. Each of these other fruit are good. They produce a kind of goodness not offered anywhere else.

You cannot have true goodness a part from love (remember, love is doing what is spiritually best for someone). Jesus did this all of the time. Jesus did not beat around the bush when it came to following God. He made sure others knew what they were getting into. He was honest with them and led them to a closer relationship with the Father. That is goodness.

Jesus was full of joy. Again, He did not spend His time just pleasing the ears of others. He spoke the truth; He lived truth. He was constantly at odds with the religious leaders. They hated Him so much that they put Him to death. However, He knew He lived the life that God desired and He found great joy in it. He offered that joy to others. He never promised rainbows and butterflies. He did say that there would be persecution but he instructed His followers to rejoice when it happened (Matthew 5:11-12). There is great good in rejoicing no matter what circumstances we find ourselves.

In John 16 Jesus tells His disciples He will be leaving. He tells them of hardship that they will face, but then in verse 33 He says He told them this so they will have peace. Most of us would not experience peace when told of hardship to come, but when we find ourselves in Christ then that is what we have. Jesus knew He would die but found peace in following the will of God. Goodness is found in the peace offered to us from God.

Goodness is found in patience. We we are blessed with God’s patience we know that is good. It is also good for us to offer patience to others. It it to be Christ-like when we do this. Jesus showed us patience with His disciples as well as others who had questions. We find ourselves once again in the will of God and that is good.

It is even good to be kind (not tolerant) to others. To offer true kindness by taking care of the needs of others (physical, emotional, spiritual, etc) is good. Jesus fed people, healed them, and also spoke about God’s will and showed others how to be right with God. God’s goodness flows from us when we are kind to others.

We are finding that by following the will of God we find ourselves doing good. The Scriptures give us the example of goodness. God sets the standard for us and gave us the example of Jesus who lived a life in goodness. Before we decide what is “right for me” we need to take a look at the Bible and see what God considers right. God’s plan and His will are the only things that are “right for me” as well as anyone else.

What are ways we see goodness in living out the other fruit of the Spirit?


6 Responses to “What is Right for Me?”

  1. Brandon, you made an excellent point when you stated that no one has the ultimate right to decide what is right except God! His right standards are clearly etched in His Word. All that we got to do is to joyfully follow Kingdom standards!

    Good post, Brandon.

  2. Thank you for your kind words Joe! I am so thankful for God’s Word and the clear standards He sets.

  3. […] at faithfulness. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,” we have finally reached the end of Galatians […]

  4. […] just as a refresher. “But the fruit of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness goodness, faithfulness, […]

  5. […] you have missed the others you can click on their names here: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and gentleness. It has been a great refresher for me, and I hope it has been the […]

  6. […] What is Right for Me? December 14 […]

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