Generally people go through life trying and wanting to do the right thing. We do not want to be at odds with others, the community, the law – we want to get life right.
Most of what God asks of us can be summed up as ‘Doing the right thing’. I guess the difficulty is knowing what the ‘right thing’ is!
Leviticus 19:1-2, 15-18 (CEV)
Moral and Religious Laws
19 The Lord told Moses 2 to say to the community of Israel:
I am the Lord your God. I am holy, and you must be holy too!
15 Be fair, no matter who is on trial—don’t favor either the poor or the rich.
16 Don’t be a gossip, but never hesitate to speak up in court, especially if your testimony can save someone’s life.
17 Don’t hold grudges. On the other hand, it’s wrong not to correct someone who needs correcting. 18 Stop being angry and don’t try to take revenge. I am the Lord, and I command you to love others as much as you love yourself.
God asks us to be holy, as he is. That sounds very scary – and difficult. For I am not God, I have lots of human tendencies that make being holy very difficult.
In its widest sense, being holy means being dedicated to the service of God. Perhaps that feels more attainable. To work towards God’s ways and his work.
Ultimately what God asks of us is to live in his values, standards and way of love. Here he adds some specific pointers to those ways: don’t gossip, speak up for someone in trouble, don’t hold grudges, stop being angry, don’t take revenge, love others and love yourself. I don’t know which one of those you have most trouble with, or which you most need to hear today. But they are all what God asks and requires of us. These things are doing the right thing. They are God’s ways.
Can they become my ways too?
Lord, I long to be holy,
to live in your ways,
to love as you love,
to stand up for right,
to be angry at the right things,
to be dedicated to you.
Give me your strength
to live your ways