“Do the next right thing you know you ought to do. . . . Nothing will drive you into the Kingdom of God like trying to do the next thing that is right. . . because you will need help, and you will get it, because that’s where God is (emphasis author’s).”- Dallas Willard
John Ortberg concludes Chapter 7 of I’d Like You More . . . as he cites political theorist Hannah Arendt. Writing in The Human Condition (1958), Hannah states that the very commitments we fear restrict us end up defining us:
” Without being bound to the fulfillment of our promises, we would never be able to keep our identities; we would be condemned to wander helplessly and without direction in the darkness of each [person’s] lonely heart.”
Thus, even when we blow a commitment, God keeps His vow to us. At the cost of the cross where Jesus died, God gives us His grace. Even when we fail and fall down.
As Dallas Willard once said in conversation with Pastor Ortberg, do the next right thing. In addition, the beauty of doing the next right thing centers on the fact that often we’re unable to do it. As a result, that realization drives us to seek God. And, rest assured, we will find Him. However, we first need an honest approach to our intentions.
In conclusion, G. K. Chesterton encourages us to be all in with Jesus. As he ends his essay ” A Defence of Rash Vows,” G. K. states:
“All around us is the city of small sins, abounding in backways and retreats, but surely, sooner of later, the towering flame will arise from the harbor announcing that the reign of the cowards is over, and a man is burning his ships.”
Today’s question: How’s God helping you to do the next right thing? Please share.
Coming Monday: the new Christmas Short Meditation, “Mighty Lord of all Creation”
Tomorrow’s blog: “People need a sense of belonging”