Love with a Lasting Effect

"So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you." -Matthew 6:2-4, NIV

In a recent telethon one stand-up comic after another joined a big show for a relief project. In between each of the acts an announcer would address the television audience and ask for donations toward a worthy project. 

One line from the show stood out. “Help those in need,” the announcer said, “and feel good about yourself.” The motivating factor behind helping those facing famine was selfish. 

This pricks our conscience. Do we do good for others in order to feel holy, to feel important, to feel in control? 

Jesus loves sacrificially. He commands us to love as He does. Love requires us to do good for others. Is our motivation selfless or selfish? If it is selfish, there is a good chance that our good deeds will be shallow and, more importantly, will not last. 

Lord, make us like You. Cause our love to be lasting in its effect.