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The Golden Rule - Do To Others As You Would Have Them Do To You
How we treat others is one of the most vital aspects to enjoying success within ourselves and in life. If we cannot find it in our hearts to be kind and to show kindness, we will be the poorer. How do you treat others? Is life all about you or do you consider how you can add value to the lives of others? Next to loving God this is the most important thing to God.
Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbour as yourself.'
THE GOLDEN RULE
You may ask, what is the Golden Rule? Perhaps you have heard of this rule. It is meant to be the basis upon which we live our lives.
Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you. (NIV)
The question I always ask myself is how would I like to be treated? I can remember a time in my life when I dealt harshly with people. It was always for the greater good, but in harshness. Now as I look back and reflect, the greater good seems insignificant in the light of some of the regrets. Sometimes we treat people out of a sense of justification. We feel we are justified to treat certain people in certain ways, or we justify it by thinking we have the greater good at heart. At other times we treat people with a paternalistic attitude, thinking that we know what is in their best interests. The question is, how would you like to be treated?
Luke 6:31 As you would like and desire that men would do to you, do exactly so to them. (Amplified).
Luke 6:31 Do for others as you would like them to do for you. (Living).
SOWING AND REAPING
Why should we treat people according to the Golden Rule? I believe we should do this first and foremost because God tells us to do this! Secondly, I believe we must do this because of the tremendous benefit it holds for us. It is as though God watches us closely and allows us to receive as we have given. Our treatment of others is part of our sowing. I remember Rodney Howard-Browne saying the following: 'Be careful how you treat others on your way up, because you may need them on your way down!".
Galatians 6:7 For whatever a man sows, that and that only is what he will reap.
We can sow kindness, mercy and grace and when we need kindness and mercy and grace it will be available to us. We can sow mercy and perhaps the day when we deserve justice, we will receive mercy. If, however, we have always demanded justice, perhaps we will get the justice we deserve when we would have longed for mercy and grace.
JUSTICE AND MERCY
This is such a strange aspect. We all long for mercy. When we have erred we hope for and long for forgiveness and mercy. How often, however, we demand justice. We feel incensed and run around demanding justice. We long for mercy and demand justice. If we will sow mercy, when we don't need mercy, to those who perhaps don't deserve mercy, then we can be afforded mercy when we deserve justice.
James 2:12-13 Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment!
Micah 6:8 What does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
DO THE RIGHT THING AND AVOID RESTITUTION
Restitution is something seldom spoken about but yet something so part of our Christian lives. Restitution is when we endeavor to undo the damage we may have caused. It involves making good or giving an equivalent for some injury. I remember a time when I had to go around to people that I had hurt and endeavor to ask for forgiveness and try to make up for the hurt and damage I had caused. It was one of the most difficult things I ever had to do. Some of them were not even prepared to speak to me and it called for extreme humility. I have never yet dealt with a person who has not had to go and make right with someone and try to make restitution. The worst is that you usually end up having to take these steps when you yourself have come to the end of yourself, your resources and your plans. It is then that we wish we had a reserve of mercy, because of the mercy we have shown, that we can draw from. Do the right thing when working with others and give them what they don't deserve so that you can get what you don't deserve but so desperately need. Don't be too proud.
Galatians 1:3 If you think you are too important to help someone in need, you are only fooling yourself. You are really a nobody.
Galatians 6:1-3 ...brothers and sisters, if another Christian is overcome by some sin, you who are Godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.
CARRY EACH OTHERS BURDENS
The Bible is clear as to how we can assist and help others.
Galatians 1:2 Share each other's troubles and problems, and in this way obey the law of Christ.
When we take the time and the trouble to be kind to others and to help them, we are serving God in the process.
Matthew 25:40 Truly I tell you, in so far as you did it for one of the least of these My brethren, you did it for Me.
Matthew 10:42 And if you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of my followers, you will surely be rewarded.
Make it your philosophy of life that you will do what is in your power to do in order to make the load lighter for those for whom you can and your reward is guaranteed!
HOW CAN WE DO THIS?
You may ask me, how can I do this? Perhaps you say you have so many concerns of your own, how can you still find the strength to be kind to others? Here are some simple tips:
1. Become useful to others.
2. Be helpful - help where you can!
3. Be kind - show kindness even if the recipient does not deserve it!
4. Be tenderhearted - perhaps this is the greatest key. It is when we are tenderhearted that the Holy Spirit can lead us so that we can do the right thing in the right moment!
Ephesians 4:32 And become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely], as God in Christ forgave you.
Develop a giving spirit. Give of yourself, your time, your resources, your forgiveness and your mercy!
Matthew 10:42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.
Surely, I declare to you, you SHALL BE REWARDED and have success!
Luke 6:31 Just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.