On the fifth night of Chanukah the “Love/Servant” candle lights the Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness and finally the Goodness candles…
Goodness… What exactly does this mean? The definition of goodness is: “the quality of being morally good or virtuous.”
If you are kind, isn’t that being good? If you show love, isn’t that being good? If you are patient, that is being good. And yet “goodness” is definitely set apart in this understanding.
As I reflect on this “fruit of the spirit,” it seems to have a deeper quality to it. From this definition, it is the quality of being “morally good.” When one stops to think about it, a person could show an act of kindness and not technically be a “morally good” person or full of virtues. One could show love to another person and not be “good” within their heart. Even joy and patience can be accomplished without having “good intentions.”
I believe that as we move through the fruits of the spirit, we move closer and closer to heart issues. We begin with “acts” that can be done and are a part of many people’s lives, even if they don’t believe in God. Most people would say we should show love, be joyful, have patience, show kindness, and definitely want peace.
This “fruit” of goodness begins to move us to the heart. It should make us stop and reflect on what is happening inside ourselves and ask “why” we are doing something. It should make us think about the reason we are kind, or loving, or patient.
Being “good” is deep. It means that at the heart your intentions are trustworthy and honest. You are not just doing something to “get a reward.” Being filled with “goodness” means that you are focusing on accomplishing something because it needs to be done and is the right thing to be done, even if there is no reward in the end.
What are some verses with the word, “goodness?” I actually found many with the word “good,” but only the fruits of the spirit and a verse in Psalm had the word “goodness.”
Psalm 27:13 If I hadn’t believed that I would see Adonai’s goodness in the land of the living, . . . (CJB)
Psalm 27 is such an encouraging Psalm. I challenge you to read the whole chapter. Here is the last verse, verse 14:
Put your hope in Adonai, be strong, and let your heart take courage! Yes, put your hope in Adonai! (CJB)
David knew that Adonai truly cared for him. David believed that the GOODNESS of God was there for him to see and experience ALL the time. After everything David had faced, he still believed that God’s GOODNESS was there for him. David was said to be a “man after God’s own heart,” which means that David had goodness in him. David’s motives and actions were moral and full of virtue.
As we reflect on what it means to be “filled with HIS LIGHT” and GOODNESS, check your heart. Ask yourself if your motives are pure. Ask yourself if your intentions are “good.” Than move in those actions and be HIS LIGHT to those around you. Spread HIS GOODNESS to all you come in contact with. The fruits of the Spirit really will draw all men to HIM, if we just let HIS SPIRIT flow through us.
This concept is told to us directly by Jesus Himself in Matthew:
Matthew 5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before people, so that they may see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven. (CJB)
Take time today to REFLECT on the GOODNESS of Adonai and let HIS goodness flow through you and SHINE HIS LIGHT to those around you.
Love and blessings,