Wanting to help others is a noble motivation to partake in any action that makes someone else’s life a little more enjoyable. However, it is just as important for a good deed to be done as discreetly as possible. Obviously, it is nearly impossible to help someone stand up after a fall in the street without that person seeing your face, unless you carry a mask with you, waiting for such an event to happen. The person you help to his feet is going to know you’ve come to his aid. But if it is possible to help someone without them knowing it, this is the path of discreetness that I believe Matthew 6:1-4 calls on us to put into practice.
The intervention of God’s goodwill through human vessels can be considered one of the greatest confirmations of a Supreme Being’s concern for the affairs of men. God wants believers in him to make a difference in the world around them. He wants us to intervene where there is tragedy, bring comfort to the hurting, and give what little we have to those who have even less. The more discreet the method of delivery, the more ‘holy intervention” gets the credit for good deeds. The less fanfare delivered to the earthly giver, the more the blessing of thanks rise to arrive at a Heavenly zip code.
“Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward by your Father in heaven.” Matthew 6:1 (NIV). That’s a very powerful admonition. Christians should heed the warning here, but they must also realize that over-thinking every good deed before taking action may not be the best approach, either. There are times when those we help will know who helped them. There are times that no matter how much we want the receiver of a gift to give thanks to the God we believe in, it just isn’t going to happen. I have atheist friends who would still reject the possibility of a Supreme Being even if He lived in their spare bedroom and ate breakfast with them every morning.
We walk a fine line between inaction and God-action. It is best we act swiftly when others are in need, keeping our minds humble and our intentions sincere. Weighing how others view what we do and why we do it can sometimes be unnecessary, as many of us have had people misread our intentions or motives for the things we do. It is our own personal mindset that Jesus wants us to examine as we continue his ministry here. Are we glorifying Him and His church when we do good deeds, or are we building our own stature in the community? The latter rebuffs the prospect of discreet giving because puffing up our own worldly resume overshadows the need to advance the Kingdom of Heaven and the light of hope that infiltrates every inch of that future home. Help those in need with Heavenly intentions and the personal discreetness will manifest itself.
You are right.....its sometimes a difficult balance, and is all about examining our own hearts, and obedience, as opposed to what others may think.The 'What would Jesus do?' question always helps me out. Again a nice article, God Bless.