Inductive Study, Galatians 6
Key Verse: Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Galatians 6:9-10
We have now reached the end of Paul’s letter to the Galatians. He’s wrapping it up. He’s giving his last admonishments and encouragements. He takes one last opportunity to remind us our life isn’t supposed to be about following the rules of the religion, but rather we are to act out the process of loving our neighbors. Paul writes about testing ourselves and reaping and sowing. He writes about boasting, saying that he boasts only in what Christ has done for him rather than anything that he himself has done. This is how Paul wants for each of us to live. Giving our life for Christ. Talking about Christ. Sharing our excitement for Christ. Paul promises a harvest if we continue to do good rather than give up. I love how he ends his letter, he makes a rather “so there” statement; “Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is the new creation. Peace and mercy be to all who follow this rule- to the Israel of God.”
As I read this chapter I come back again and again to verse 9. Don’t become weary in doing good. The first few times I read it I heard Paul saying not to grow physically tired from the act of doing good. That speaks to me. In our culture we’re likely to be worn out and exhausted from the business of our day. How much of that busyness is spent doing good? If I’m going to be physically exhausted from something isn’t it better that it be from doing good than from just daily living? How can I fit more good doing activities into my lifestyle? Can it be something as simple as smiling at the other drivers at the stop light or taking the time to notice something about the check out lady so that I can compliment her? The next few times I read it I thought about my own lifestyle and the culture of busyness that I live in. I don’t believe that God wants me to be so busy all the time that I grow weary from any activity- doing good or otherwise. Many times in scripture God says to rest. Yet rest seems so counter intuitive it’s hard for me to do it. In those times when I do practice being still and resting I find myself feeling lazy and thinking of the things I should be up and doing. I have decided I must work at resting more effectively. The last few times I read the verse I began to think about the word weary differently. I had thought about being weary from doing good but now I was thinking about what it means to be weary of doing good. Being weary of something isn’t a physical exhaustion, it’s a mental one. This is when I don’t have any real excuse for why I can’t do good, I just don’t want to do good. I’m tired of being taken advantage of or I’m tired of doing good that doesn’t seem to be doing any good- I want to see results now. Where is that harvest? Does what good I’m doing actually matter to anyone or is it just a lot of wasted energy? Sometimes other people are irrelevant, even the people I’m doing the good for. I know that God always notices when I do the good that he has asked me to do. That’s what matters. Whatever harvest comes of it will be for his glory and in his time. My motivation must be driven by the love I have for God. Paul is right, I must never grow weary in doing good; a weary servant is of no use to anyone.
Father in Heaven, Thank you for walking through Galatians with me. Thank you for each insight you spoke to me. Thank you for the blessings you have given to me. Please guide me as I continue to run this race for you. Show me the steps you would have me take. Show me how to plan regular times of rest into my schedule. Show me the good that you want me to do. Help me to keep my eyes on you; the source of my help, strength, and comfort. Be glorified through me today. In Jesus name, Amen.